Fireworks cause environmental pollution

May 29, 2007

U.S. government scientists say Fourth of July fireworks displays often held over lakes and other bodies of water can pollute the water with perchlorate.

The U. S. Environmental Protection Agency's Richard Wilkin and colleagues, who conducted the research, note concerns have arisen over the effects of environmental perchlorate on human health and wildlife. Sources of perchlorate range from lightening and certain fertilizers to the perchlorate compounds in rocket fuel and explosives.

Scientists long suspected community fireworks displays were another source, but few studies had been done on the topic.

Wilkin's group has now established fireworks displays as a source of perchlorate contamination by analyzing water in an Oklahoma lake before and after fireworks displays in 2004, 2005 and 2006. Within 14 hours after the fireworks, perchlorate levels rose 24 to 1,028 times above background levels. Levels peaked about 24 hours after the display, and then decreased to the pre-fireworks background within 20- to 80 days.

The study is detailed in the June 1 issue of the journal Environmental Science & Technology.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

Explore further: Great Barrier Reef dredge dumping plan could be shelved

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Job listing service ZipRecruiter raises $63 million

31 minutes ago

ZipRecruiter, a California start-up that tries to simplify tasks for recruiters, has raised $63 million in initial venture capital funding as the 4-year-old service races to keep up with growing demand.

PIN customers can avoid heat of thief's phone attachment

56 minutes ago

Engineer Mark Rober has some words of advice in guarding the safety of your PIN. His advice comes in the form of a video where he demonstrates that a thief can steal a PIN by using a thermal imaging attachment ...

Scientists get set for simulated nuclear inspection

9 hours ago

Some 40 scientists and technicians from around the world will descend on Jordan in November to take part in a simulated on-site inspection of a suspected nuclear test site on the banks of the Dead Sea.

Recommended for you

Halliburton pays $1.1 bn for Gulf of Mexico BP spill

4 hours ago

Oil services company Halliburton said Tuesday it would pay a $1.1 billion settlement over its role in the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil rig blowout that led to the United States' most disastrous oil spill.

Underwater grass comeback bodes well for Chesapeake Bay

5 hours ago

The Susquehanna Flats, a large bed of underwater grasses near the mouth of the Susquehanna River, virtually disappeared from the upper Chesapeake Bay after Tropical Storm Agnes more than 40 years ago. However, ...

Clean air halves health costs in Chinese city

7 hours ago

Air pollution regulations over the last decade in Taiyuan, China, have substantially improved the health of people living there, accounting for a greater than 50% reduction in costs associated with loss of life and disability ...

User comments : 0