Tired of the racket caused by the constant barrage of fireworks? You should consider a move to Beiling in Hubei province. After a small fire on a balcony caused by fireworks inspired a village-wide ban, Beiling residents are currently enjoying their 8th year of freedom from noisy pyrotechnics.
Danwei reports that the ban has given Beiling:
A more peaceful environment, cleaner streets, less noise and ruckus, a greater sense of calm and security, and cleaner air. And not only this, as the residents informed the reporter, now during Spring Festival holidays people can leave their windows open and can freely engage with each other in all kinds of hearty activities without being disturbed. All the residents were in agreement that their community is so much better now.
Fireworks have come under high scrutiny this year for their potential contribution to the smog which pervades many of China’s cities. Not only is the billowing smoke from the aftermath of fireworks quite unsightly, air quality deteriorates considerably when many fireworks have been lit. This year in Shanghai PM2.5 levels rose substantially during the Chinese New Year due to the millions of people setting off fireworks. The colourful noisemakers had their reputation worsened further this year when an exploding truck full of fireworks caused a bridge to collapse, killing 26 people.
Whether China should forgo thousands of years of tradition because the government is unable (or unwilling?) to deal with the pollution problem is debatable, but at this point it would seem that almost everyone in China is a little bit envious of the quiet Beiling is able to enjoy.
By Oliver Dzuba // Image credit: @jeffanddayna.