Hey, it’s Diwali today! A time of the year celebrated with lights and crackers all around India. But the situation in Delhi only suggests that we stick with lights as pollution levels have reached 20 times over the World Health Organisation’s recommended limit. Now that’s alarmingly high!

The Air Quality Index (AQI) in Delhi has turned ‘hazardous’ and the firecrackers are only going to worsen it further. The celebrations are fun only when it is done the right way. The festive season sees a rise in Air pollution levels and wastage of energy and food. Plastic packaging and cracker debris litter the roads and several elderly people and animals suffer from anxiety attacks with loud crackers!

It’s time we celebrated a smokeless, noiseless and safe Diwali with minimal environmental consequence. Here are a few ways to ensure that today is a good day for the environment.

1) Thoughtfully crack-it-up:

Diwali has become synonymous to bursting firecrackers nowadays. The firecrackers leave the city in a haze and littered with waste the next morning. The extremely loud ones end up scaring the pets and giving elderlies at home an anxiety attack! Hence, it’s better if you stick with not bursting crackers at all. But if you’re insistent, there are green firecrackers available, which are made out of recycled paper, aren’t awfully loud and does not harm the environment. And for those who want a new alternative to bursting crackers, you can opt for a small bonfire made out dried leaves and twigs. That’d keep the kids to clean up your surroundings as well. Or, you can let your creativity out and make balloons filled with glitter and have a shiny fun-filled Diwali!

2) Go earthy:

Stick to the olden times – good old oil diyas! The look and the ambience created by these diyas cannot be beaten! These diyas are cost-effective, nature-friendly and very beautiful. You can even make some diyas at home! Coconut shells, seashells, wheat dough etc are great options for DIY diyas. Substituting the electric diyas and electric lights with these and end up reducing your electricity consumption! But if you really have to stick with electric lighting, go for LED lights.

3) Green Gift:

Since it is the season of gifting – opt for something green this time around. Gift them a plant – be it kitchen herbs, feng shui plants, air purifying plants, bonsai etc. These kinds of gifts have an eco-conscious touch to it. Gift them in a cloth bag or a jute bag. Wrap these gifts in recycled paper instead of those shiny wraps. Do everything you can which has an eco-friendly touch to it.

4) Upcycled decor:

Brighten up your home and the environment by reusing everyday items to innovate and redecorate. Build Diwali lanterns with CDs, using different plastic wraps to decorate the lantern and so on. Or you can light up the lives of the people associated with NGOs. You can buy products made for Diwali from many different NGOs – Muskaan foundation for instance.

5) Board games and more!

Since the festival season is all about spreading joy and eliminating the evil, get your family together for some fun-filled family time. Get out those old board games and bring your loved ones together. Bond over a game of UNO! A humble game of Ludo can keep your family bonded together for hours. There’s a lot of fun activities you can do this Diwali season. Bring your family closer by staying indoors and playing games, instead of heading out in the polluted environment.

So let’s celebrate Diwali with a green tinge to it. Here’s to a happy, safe and green Diwali!