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J&B Recycling Knowledge

Planning an eco friendly bonfire night

Planning An Eco Friendly Bonfire Night

When it comes to Bonfire Night, a dazzling display of fireworks and a crackling bonfire under the starry sky are traditional highlights. However, in today's eco-conscious world, there's a growing desire to celebrate this cherished tradition in a more environmentally responsible manner. In this article, we'll explore how you can plan an eco-friendly Bonfire Night that's not only fun but also reduces your environmental footprint.

1. Opt for Sustainable Firewood: The heart of any Bonfire Night celebration is the bonfire itself. Instead of using wood that contributes to deforestation and carbon emissions, consider using sustainably sourced firewood or even reclaimed wood. This choice ensures you enjoy your bonfire while minimizing the impact on the environment.

2. Eco-Friendly Fireworks: Traditional fireworks are known for their chemical compositions that release harmful pollutants into the air. To make your Bonfire Night eco-friendly, explore options like eco-friendly fireworks or silent fireworks. These alternatives are designed to produce fewer emissions and less noise, making them kinder to both the environment and your neighbours.

3. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle: Embrace the three Rs of sustainability during your Bonfire Night preparations. Opt for reusable plates, cutlery, and cups instead of disposable ones. Encourage guests to recycle by providing clearly labelled bins for recyclables. Minimising waste is a significant step toward making your celebration more eco-friendly.

4. Local Food and Drinks: Support local farmers and reduce your carbon footprint by sourcing food and beverages locally. Choose organic and sustainable options to create a delicious menu that not only pleases your taste buds but also aligns with your eco-friendly goals.

5. Energy-Efficient Lighting: Illuminate your Bonfire Night party with energy-efficient LED lights. These bulbs consume less energy and last longer than traditional incandescent bulbs, saving both electricity and money while reducing your environmental impact.

6. Carpool or Use Public Transportation: If your Bonfire Night gathering is at a location that's accessible by public transport, encourage guests to carpool or take buses and trains to reduce the number of individual vehicles on the road. Fewer cars mean fewer emissions and less traffic congestion.

7. Bonfire Clean-up: After the festivities, ensure a thorough clean-up. Safely extinguish the bonfire and dispose of the ashes properly. Pick up litter and ensure all waste, including fireworks debris, is collected and sorted for recycling.

8. Eco-Friendly Party Favours: If you're considering party favours, opt for eco-friendly options such as reusable tote bags, bamboo utensils, or biodegradable confetti. These sustainable choices make thoughtful souvenirs for your guests.

9. Inform and Educate: Take the opportunity to educate your guests about the importance of eco-friendliness and sustainability. Share information about the choices you've made for your Bonfire Night celebration and encourage them to adopt similar practices in their own lives.

10. Consider Donations: If you usually spend a considerable amount on fireworks, consider diverting some of that budget to environmental or community charities. This not only supports important causes but also aligns your celebration with eco-friendly values.

If you are building a bonfire on private property, here’s how to do it safely for yourself and the environment:

  • Avoid building your bonfire when the air pollution levels are high, this information is often found in your local weather reports. Similarly, avoid lighting your bonfire in the wrong weather conditions. On damp days, smoke can remain in the air for longer periods of time, however on a windy, more crisp day, the smoke will better disperse into the air.
  • Burn only dry materials. Burning household waste, rubber or plastic materials and paint can harm not only the environment but also yourself and the people around the bonfire.
  • Avoid using engine oils and petrol to encourage your bonfire.
  • Never leave your bonfire unattended. Ensure that once your celebrations are over, the fire is doused with water and is not left to smoulder.
  • Check your bonfire before lighting it for any signs of wildlife that may have buried into it.

Can you recycle fireworks?

Unfortunately, used and unused fireworks cannot be recycled. Once used, the remaining element of the firework should be soaked in water to ensure there is no flammable material remaining.

Sparklers are also non-recyclable as they are coated in flammable matter. In order to safely dispose of fireworks and sparklers, place them in your general waste bin, but remember to ensure they have been soaked in water and have fully cooled.

Health and Safety Tips

It is always crucial to remember the importance of safety when handling fireworks! We asked our Health and Safety Manager for a few tips to ensure you keep yourself and others safe this Bonfire Night:

  • Using a smooth hard surface, ensure that the fireworks are isolated to one spot. This makes them safer and easier to clean the debris, which will also be safer for the environment as a result!
  • Before clearing the used firework debris, ensure that they are completely extinguished and cooled.
  • Do not attempt to re-light a firework that failed to go off. Wait no less than 20 minutes and soak it in water to ensure it won’t ignite.

In conclusion, planning an eco-friendly Bonfire Night is not only achievable but also enjoyable. By making mindful choices when it comes to food, lighting, fireworks, and more, you can have a fantastic celebration while reducing your environmental impact. Let's make Bonfire Night a time to not only remember history but also to create a brighter and greener future.

J&B Recycling are based in the North of England. Our commercial collection services operate from the Scottish Borders down to Hull and North Yorkshire. Our main areas for collecting and processing commercial waste include Teesside (Darlington, Hartlepool, Middlesbrough, Stockton), Durham, Gateshead, Newcastle, Sunderland, North Tyneside and Northumberland. Get in touch for more information and to request a quote.

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