We’ve probably all been guilty of this at some point in our lives. Whether we’re at a party, wedding, celebration or some other special occasion; or maybe we’re just doing it on our own, we’ve all released balloons into the sky. While it might look beautiful and mark an important moment, the reality is that it’s actually deadly. Animals are suffering and dying because of it – and it needs to stop.
Remember when you were a kid and you would enter a competition to tie a label on a balloon, release it into the air and see how far it would go? The owner of the balloon which went the farthest would get some sort of prize, and there was a certain amount of joy in knowing that a balloon launched in one area could potentially end up halfway around the world. It can also end up wrapped around a bird’s beak, preventing it from eating or feeding its young. And so it dies.
Plastic balloons are lethal to animals, and we as a society should be working to cut down how much plastic we’re releasing into the environment. With the world’s seas, rivers oceans containing huge garbage patches predominately made up of plastic waste, sending balloons into the atmosphere is only going to make matters worse.
It’s not only birds that can be seriously injured or killed too. Whales, sheep, turtles, and other wild and even domesticated animals have suffered as the plastic falls back to earth. With balloons able to reach hundreds and thousands of miles, even remote, untouched places can be affected. Balloons can tie animals up, get caught in their feet or around their mouths, and even wind up in their stomachs – poisoning them. Many creatures can confuse them for prey – and this can cause serious damage – including blocking their intestinal tract which causes starvation.
In certain places around the world, the release of balloons into the atmosphere has been seriously prohibited, or at the very least, controlled. But it’s not enough and as the video below shows hundreds of balloons getting released into the sky as part of some celebration – it should make any environmentally conscious person very angry indeed.
And don’t believe those “biodegradable” claims made by some balloon companies – when in fact these are the worst offenders and can take years to break down. Remember – every single piece of plastic we have ever made is still somewhere on this planet. It’s time to look for alternatives and recycle like crazy! Watch and share this video to spread this very important message.