If you're concerned about the damage your current approach to fire safety may be inflicting on the environment, here are a couple of tips which should help you to adopt a more eco-friendly approach to this issue.
Dispose of your used fire extinguishers responsibly
A lot of people who no longer need their fire extinguishers choose to throw these items in with their normal household waste. This is a mistake which could have a very negative impact on the environment. Foam fire extinguishers, in particular, should never be disposed of in this manner.
The reason for this is that, even after they have been emptied, these fire extinguishers will still contain small quantities of foam residue around their nozzles and inside their tanks. If they are tossed into a landfill, it is very likely that this residue will contaminate the soil and any water bodies (such as oceans, rivers, and lakes) in the area around the refuse site.
Aquatic creatures who come into contact with this foam may die. Even if they don't, their ingestion of this substance could lead to the toxic foam entering the food chain which could, in turn, have a negative effect on human and animal health.
As such, it is important to dispose of your used fire extinguishers in an environmentally-responsible manner. Your local recycling centre should be able to advise you on how to do this; in most instances, these centres will have a dedicated service designed specifically for the safe recycling of hazardous materials.
Opt for eco-friendly fire safety products
There are a number of fire safety products which have little to no impact on the environment. Where it is possible to do so, you should consider using these instead of their potentially harmful counterparts.
For example, try to use water-based fire extinguishers, rather than CO2 or foam (both of which have the potential to cause environmental damage), in most areas of your home or business. Water can be effective in putting out a wide range of fires, including those caused by textiles, paper, or wood.
In instances where water is not an appropriate option (for example, in the kitchen, where an electrical fire is likely to occur), fire blankets are an excellent alternative to foam or CO2.
If you are concerned that a fire blanket may not be sufficient, you could always have a 'backup' fire extinguisher nearby, which you can use if the blanket does not eliminate the fire. For more information, visit websites like http://www.fireprotectionservices.com.au.