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Couple’s gender reveal party sparks outrage online over harmful impact: ‘The bar is too low’

“[At] least they didn’t start a wildfire.”

“[At] least they didn’t start a wildfire.”

Photo Credit: iStock

Gender reveal parties have become a controversial trend in recent years. First-time parents are especially excited to celebrate, and while it’s all fun and games in the moment, the aftermath has proved to be anything but. 

In a popular Reddit post on r/f***cars, a forum dedicated to the discussion of the harmful effects of cars while encouraging sustainable means of transit, a user shared a disturbing gender reveal photo.

“[At] least they didn’t start a wildfire.”
Photo Credit: Reddit

A blue car is performing a burnout in the driveway, covering the expecting couple in baby blue smoke while guests cheer and take photos in the background.

“I can’t even!!!” the poster captioned the image. 

One obvious concern is a pregnant woman breathing in toxic fumes that are harmful to herself and the baby. However, this photo is a great example of how something that might not seem like a big deal to some people is contributing to a more significant problem.

Unfortunately, some of these joyous celebrations are turning into environmental nightmares. From confetti being left all over the ground to hazardous chemicals being dumped into natural water resources, the damage is becoming as large as the spectacle. 

One California couple’s announcement using pyrotechnics sparked a catastrophic wildfire, torching almost 23,000 acres, burning down five houses, and killing a firefighter, according to the Guardian.

Burnouts, in particular, release toxic chemicals from the burned rubber into the tire smoke — essentially vaporized rubber, per the website CarThrottle. According to National Geographic, tires are typically made of about 19% natural rubber and 24% synthetic rubber — a plastic polymer. So when a car burns rubber, microplastics are released into the air, which is a major environmental concern.

The traditional gas-powered transportation industry is a major contributor to the overheating of our planet, accounting for around 30% of all Earth-warming air pollution annually, reports the Union of Concerned Scientists. And according to Emission Analytics, cited by Green Car Reports, tire-wear pollution is higher than exhaust pollution.

The Reddit post had several users revved up, and for good reason.

“Waste of fuel, pollution of air soil and water, hearing damage, promoting cars and burnouts as ‘cool’,” one user listed.

One optimist commented, “[At] least they didn’t start a wildfire.”

To which another user responded, “The bar is too low.”

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