There’s no arguing that balloons are strikingly beautiful — and the motive behind them is always positive. But when it comes to wildlife and natural resources, balloons blow.
When balloons make their way back down from the skies, the best we can hope for, is that they become nothing more than ugly litter. But unfortunately, plastic pollution is a very real issue, especially in our oceans, and balloons make it a hell of a lot worse.
Both sea and land animals regularly confuse balloon litter as food. Sea turtles are particularly vulnerable because the deflated balloons look a lot like their jellyfish prey. Once consumed, balloons usually lead to stomach blockages, which in turn, lead to starvation.
Additionally, the strings or ribbons attached to balloons can be equally as dangerous. Birds can get tangled, and sea life, like sea turtles, seals and dolphins, can have their flippers or fins snared, restricting their movements and compromising their capacity to catch food. These injuries can lead to infections, starvation, drowning and death.
Even latex balloons, often fondly referred to as the environmentally friendly option due to their biodegradability, are not a safe bet. Testing has proven that decomposition can take anywhere from six months to four years — allowing plenty of time to harm our beloved planet.
So, what are some of the alternatives? Well, we’ve got your backs Street Feasters. This year, because we love our planet and know you do too, we have replaced balloons with chalk in our Street Feast Packs.
Chalk drawings are a great way for people of all ages to get together and temporarily brighten up the street. You can use it in the lead-up to your event, writing details on the footpath for all your neighbours to see, create games like hopscotch on the day, or even to have your own street art competition.
There’s a plethora of chalky opportunities! And we would LOVE to see what you use it for. Send us a picture to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note: If you’re looking for hanging décor replacement see how to make your own re-usable pom-pom décor on our blog tomorrow.