Seem quiet this holiday season? Clearly the bang and boom of previous Spring Festival celebrations is a bit tamer this year, as almost 38 percent fewer fireworks have been sold for the Year of the Horse, China’s official Xinhua News Agency reported Wednesday.
The dip has been attributed both to an economic slowdown, but also to city government efforts to control the use of fireworks to rein in air pollution in the capital. Our friends at Shanghaiist did a story a few days ago about 41 tons of fireworks trash produced by all the festivities, but that link is broken now. Still, that sounds like a lot of trash we don’t really need, holiday or not.
The good news is that fireworks-related injuries also seem to be down, by 34.5 percent this year. "There were no reports of deaths or loss of eyes," Xinhua said. Well, that’s good. "Local police received 7.4 percent fewer reports of fires caused by fireworks than a year ago," Xinhua reported. We’re not sure if that means that a relatively small number of fires dipped even more, albeit slightly, or if there are still quite a few fires even though fireworks sales were down significantly.
Beijing Boyce and Grape Wall of China founder and the Beijinger local beer, wine, and spirits contributor Jim "Beijing" Boyce harkened back to 2007 as "arguably the best Chinese New Year fireworks [video] of the past 5,000 years." The Olympics are past now, and so is the tidal swell of fireworks, it seems.
This post first appeared on theBeijinger website on February 7, 2014.
Photo courtesy of Anthony Wang (Flickr)