The Great Fires would have “a negligible impact” on the environment

Last year, air quality in Quebec was damaged by forest fires. So much so that the population was asked to refrain from lighting campfires and fireworks, particularly during the celebrations of Midsummer on June 23 and Confederation on July 1. Since then, municipalities, such as Mont-Tremblant and Orford, have completely banned them from their territory.


Jean-François Archambault, event director of Grands Feux Loto-Québec. (Frédéric Matte/Le Soleil)

Based on the study commissioned from the firm AtkinsRéalis (formerly SNC-Lavalin) by the Regroupement des events pyrotechniques du Québec, the event director of Grands Feux Loto-Québec, Jean-François Archambault, affirms that fireworks have “negligible impact” on the environment and air quality.

However, when the results of this study were published last March, the Quebec Association of Physicians for the Environment (AQME) mentioned that the government standards on which this analysis was based were outdated.

Mr. Archambault argues that, even when referring to the stricter standards of the World Health Organization (WHO), all the events taken into account in this study, except one which took place in Montreal, were below the established scales.

In order to assess the impact of fireworks on the environment, the event director of Grands Feux Loto-Québec presents these notes taken from the analysis carried out by AtkinsRéalis:

“The GHGs generated by the eight pyromusical shows are negligible since they represent a total of 3.25 tonnes of CO2. For comparison, an intercity bus emits around 0.5 tonnes of CO2 when traveling between Montreal and Trois-Rivières, which represents the average emissions from a show.”

“It’s something that was informative for everyone,” says Mr. Archambault about the study carried out.

No thinking going on

On the side of the Public Health Department of the CIUSSS de la Capitale-Nationale, “there is no reflection underway […] regarding the use of fireworks in the Quebec region,” was the response to Sun.

However, we remind you that exposure to smoke from fireworks could cause inconvenience to certain groups of more vulnerable people.

“We will follow public health recommendations,” assures Jean-François Archambault.

“Obviously if there are other events like [les feux de forêt] who were supposed to happen, we are going to do like last year: move the event. Obviously, when we do that, it’s not because our event causes a lot more pollution, it’s to ensure that people don’t go outside,” he adds.

The organizers of the Grands Feux Loto-Québec still wish to make new efforts to reduce the environmental impacts of their events. In particular, they intend to modify “the scripting of pyromusical shows in order to project the pieces higher up to promote more uniform dispersion of fine particles”.

Parties for all tastes

The festivities which will take place on both sides of the Saint Lawrence begin on August 1 at 6 p.m. under the theme of Rio Carnival with musical performances and colorful parades.


Characters representing the themes of the eight “parties” pose with the organizers of the Grands Feux Loto-Québec and their partners during the unveiling of the program. (Frédéric Matte/Le Soleil)

On August 6, organizers hope to marry a couple live as part of their “wedding evening” where love will be in the spotlight.

The following Thursday, drag queens will be at the helm of an extravaganza. In addition to having fun, it will be an opportunity to raise awareness of the issues and realities of the LGBTQ+ community, say the organizers.

Seeing the craze for country music, the Grands Feux Loto-Québec decided to offer a “Yeehaw!” evening. August 15th. It will be time to show off your talents for line dancing or even mechanical bull riding.

“Sports celebrations”, “year 60” and “Summer Christmas” parties are also on the program.

The Grands Feux Loto-Québec will end with a big funfair on August 24. That day, the sites will be lively from midday.

In addition to these themes, the 28th edition of this event offered free to the population will offer “large-scale ambulatory entertainment” and will introduce “new visual effect technology to complement the shows”.

More information here.



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