The next time you attend a ceremony or party, you may not see a balloon launch. There was a recent ban that went into effect in California and it is not too much of a stretch to see that happening here in New York State as well.

According to recent reports:

...balloons could decompose into microplastics found in oceans, drinking water, food and even the air.

City leaders said balloons filled with any gas lighter than air, like helium, pose safety threats to animals, humans and the environment. And although balloons appear to float off into space, they always come back down, causing issues.

I have been saying for years that although I love a good balloon and we get the for the kids on occasion, it sure is frustrating when you find them in the woods like the one below. I am in the woods often and see balloons scattered around. The balloons have to land somewhere and often it is in a woods, a farm field or water.

Photo by: Clay Moden
Photo by: Clay Moden

The other issue that has come up recently is the mylar/metallic balloon launches. Metallic balloons pose a threat to electric lines and grids.

When foil-coated balloons, also known as Mylar balloons come in contact with a power line or other electric equipment, their metallic properties can cause a surge of electricity that can impede equipment. Untethered balloons cause thousands of unnecessary electric service interruptions each year for Pepco customers. These balloons also have been known to float for days and can end up having a negative impact on the environment.

Balloons are fun but perhaps a simple reminder to keep an eye on them will help to keep them from becoming litter.

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