The environmental hazards caused by Plaster of Paris (POP) Ganesh idols need immediate attention. Hence the awareness for effectsof POP idols is of utmost importance.
Quick Facts of Plaster of Paris Ganesh Idols:
- POP is a building material made from Gypsum which is heated upto 150 deg C. It is used for making casts for broken bones.
- It is an insoluble powder and forms an impermeable layer on the bottom of pond or lake.
- The research has found that the oxygen level falls drastically after the Ganesh Idol visarjan on Ganesh Chaturthi.
- Concentration of substances like calcium, magnesium, silicon and heavy metals like arsenic, lead and mercury had significant increase.
- Lead used in colour for making POP idol affect heart, kidney, nervous system. Use of lead ranges from 6 to 10 micrograms which should be practically be ZERO.
- Lakes, rivers where the natural water springs may get blocked with POP deposition and it can also cause decrease in depth of water body.
- Tons of POP is added to Mumbai sea as more than 2 lakhs Ganesh idol immersed in 2011.
The POP Ganesh idols are destroying the natural acquatic eco system, creating serious ecological imbalance and environmental issue. Plant, fish die in large numbers and affecting human lives.
The environmental crisis is due to the non biodegradable materials used for making such idols and also the fact that the number of idols has gone up dramatically over the years implies that the concentration of such materials will increase in our natural resources.
Read more about the POP hazards