Ballooning Out of Control
Balloons of all types can kill or injure wildlife through both ingestion and entanglement. Those threats are greatly increase by organized balloon releases. Marine mammals, birds, and sea turtles often become entangled in the attached strings or ribbons. In fact, studies indicate that balloons are disproportionately ingested by turtles because they resemble jellyfish or other food sources.
People often release balloons as a form of celebration but there are better and safer ways to celebrate. Flying kites, blowing bubbles or planting native trees are far more eco-friendly.
What We’re Doing
Our partners are working on reducing intentional release of balloons through public awareness and education. This flyer was created by the American Littoral Society to spread awareness of the problems with balloons released into the environment:
We also support local initiatives to stop intentional releases. Atlantic City and several nearby towns including Margate, Ventnor and Longport have banned the intentional release of helium balloons. Read more from US News & World Report and from NorthJersey.com.
NY State has a bill pending for state wide legislation that prohibits the outdoor release of 25 or more balloons inflated with a gas that is lighter than air within a 24 hour period in order to reduce litter and protect the marine environment; makes related provisions for enforcement and for certain exceptions (A2160).