Balloons have accompanied us in our celebrations all our lives: weddings, baptisms, communions and birthdays, have always been colorfully adorned by them. However, our “We Are Ecocentric” movement wants to explain to you that we need to abandon this type of decoration for the sake of our planet and the living beings that surround us.
Very harmful to animals
When they reach the seas and oceans, party balloons pose a real danger to sea turtles, fish and birds that can suffocate to death if they ingest them.
An article in Nature magazine indicates that seabirds are 32 times more likely to die from ingesting a balloon than from ingesting other types of hard plastics such as Lego pieces or straws.
It explains that although balloons account for only 2% of all plastics ingested by seabirds, they are very lethal, causing 42% of all plastic-related deaths.
A flying balloon can also obstruct the birds’ flight path, and their legs or other body parts often become entangled with their strings, especially when they fall into trees.
Cervantes’s balloons would disappear this year
Depending on their composition, balloons can take up to 450 years to degrade. Imagine that the publication of the first edition of “The Ingenious Gentleman Don Quixote of La Mancha” in 1605 had been celebrated by Miguel de Cervantes by hosting a party in which hundreds of balloons were released. It would take until now for those balloons to finally disappear for good.
Our ecocentrism is firm about this. Releasing balloons at a party can be a lot of fun but the consequences are not at all amusing.
Even less so if they are filled with helium! Although they disappear from sight within seconds of release, balloons can fall thousands of kilometers away and impact ecosystems and biodiversity.
The party goes on
We can remove polluting balloons from our decorations, finding for more sustainable alternatives to give color and joy to our celebrations.
A few examples include garlands made from recycled paper, paper balls or vases with flowers as centerpieces.
Put your imagination to the test and rev up your ecocentrism! When thinking about your party decorations, don’t forget the future of your planet.