Fine Dust

New research proves minimal impact of firework on the environment

Due to the ongoing public discussion about high fine dust levels and pollution from New Year’s Eve fireworks, the VPI (German Pyrotechnic Industry Association) commissioned a study in which real fine dust levels were measured for the first time. An independent institute was commissioned to conduct a complex and multifaceted study on the emission of fine dust by fireworks. The measured values were checked by the UBA (Federal Environment Agency) and finally considered valid and adopted. They are therefore suitable for the calculation of the fine dust content by fireworks for further international review.

Find here the most important results

In the course of their discussions, the VPI and the UBA decided to select a weighted emission factor that would provide a more accurate picture, considering consumer preferences on New Year’s Eve. A value of 286.2 kg of PM10 fine dust per metric ton of net explosive mass (NEM) was determined. With regard to the past New Year’s Eve, the following values result: The NEM portion of the New Year’s Eve fireworks was 5,159 tons. Multiplied by 0.2862 tons of fine dust PM10, the total fine dust emission from fireworks on New Year’s Eve 2019 is 1,477 tons, which corresponds to a share of 0.7% of the total particulate matter emission in Germany.

The limit value of fine dust permitted in Germany is 40 μg PM10/cubic meter as an annual average. A PM10 daily average, moreover, may not exceed 50 μg PM10/cubic meter more than 35 times. None of the 98 cities named by the DUH exceeded this.

Fine dust is a local emission. However, these are not relevant for the climate. Above all, greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide and methane, are responsible for global warming.