The environmental impact of October 12 and the story behind it

October 12 will be celebrated again in Spain, with a parade in which more than 4,000 troops, 150 motor vehicles and 84 aircraft will participate, without taking into account the displacement of the 2,500 guests who will attend the Royal Palace.


Foto de Antonio Filigno

According to information released by the Ministry of Defence, the Hispanic Heritage Day parade will include the participation of 58 planes, 26 helicopters, 97 vehicles and 37 motorcycles.


Given this information, the deputy of More Country-Greens Equo Inés Sabanés registered a written question to the Government for its written response by the Executive, in which she demanded to know the environmental impact that the military deployment would represent, according to what Europa Press has had access to.


In addition, Sabanés has assured that several of the aircraft participating in the parade would have been training for several days to prepare for the event. In addition, a part of the motor vehicles that participate in this would come from the outskirts of Madrid. This would double the CO₂ emissions.



How much could vehicles and aircraft pollute on October 12th?


Firstly, it must be taken into account that not all vehicles or aircraft pollute the same. Without taking into account those who travel in private jets or official aircraft, the pollution of flights is usually measured, taking into account the number of passengers and the kilometres travelled.


The European Environment Agency claims that a plane with 88 people on board would emit about 285 grams of CO₂ per passenger kilometre. That is why, adding the number of aircraft participating in the parade and the previous days of training, it is very likely that they have emitted twice what would be normal in a single year.


As far as cars are concerned, they emit around 143 grams of CO₂ per kilometre travelled, and motorcycles would emit almost twice as much, but all depending on the type of engine that these types of vehicles use.



What is the story behind this day?


October 12 is one of the most celebrated dates, not only in Spain, but around the world. Every year, a wide variety of countries commemorate the discovery of America by Christopher Columbus in 1492, but there are many who celebrate and remember the meeting of two worlds.


Foto de Los Muertos Crew

Latin America had another name for this day: Día de la Raza (Day of Race). "That day was named after the miscegenation that was born from the encounter between these two very different cultural groups. On the one hand, the white Spanish race, on the other the indigenous, thus initiating the union between Europe and America, which is also known as the meeting of two worlds.


Over the years, Latin America changed the name of Día de la Raza in order to highlight the connection between different cultures and races. This day has been renamed the Day of Cultural Diversity, the Day of Respect for Cultural Diversity or the Day of Indigenous People.



Like Latin America, Spain should take the same approach and change the meaning that Columbus Day currently has to celebrate different cultures, especially considering that what was committed when Christopher Columbus arrived at the continent was a genocide.

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