Balloons are a staple decoration for any party. Whether you are planning a birthday celebration for your kids or your parents, this party accessory never feels out of place. However, as our world becomes more environmentally conscious, the proper disposal of balloons is a topic of discussion that has been brought to the forefront of people’s minds.
As much as we love party balloons, there is no denying that careless disposal of this item can be a hazard to the environment. We each have a responsibility to play in protecting Mother Nature, but this does not mean you have to give them up entirely. Safeguarding the Earth and using party balloons are not mutually exclusive. You can still accomplish both as long as you educate yourself on the proper disposal of balloons. In this article, let us share the harmful effects of improper balloon disposal and how you can safely discard them to prevent pollution.
Harmful effects of improper balloon disposal
When helium balloons are not properly discarded and drift off, they can pose several environmental and societal risks. These balloons gradually lose their flight and altitude as the helium leaks out over time. Eventually, they can find their way to the sea or land, where they may be mistaken as food and eaten by the local wildlife. Moreover, marine life can get entangled by the strings attached to these balloons, causing bodily harm or death.
In addition to the environment, these balloons can also impact our daily lives. The helium balloons can drift for miles before they finally deflate. At best, they can ruin the aesthetics of even the cleanest place, necessitating a clean-up to remove the pollution. At worst, these loose balloons can cause a power outage if they come into contact with any power line.
How to discard your balloons properly
If you are environmentally conscious, you may want to opt for eco-friendly party decorations such as latex balloons. Natural latex balloons are biodegradable and will decompose over time as the material is made from rubber trees. However, proper disposal of the balloons is still needed to prevent any pollution.
Once the party is over, make sure the latex balloons are correctly deflated by cutting their knot-end with a pair of scissors. While some people may prefer to pop them with a sharp pin, we would not recommend doing so as the noise generated by the popping of the balloon is very disruptive and alarming.
After the balloons are deflated, remove any strings or ribbons attached to them and cut them into tiny pieces. Once these actions are accomplished, and the balloons are laid flat, proceed to seal them up inside a trash bag and dispose of them in a waste bin.
Recycling ideas for mylar and foil balloons
Mylar and foil balloons are typically made of plastic which is non-biodegradable. However, this does not mean you should remove them from your party decorations entirely. Mylar and foil balloons are more durable than latex balloons, so there are various ways you can reuse them. Why not turn to your artsy side and get creative with them?
These shiny foil balloons are usually adorned with attractive letterings and images, making them an excellent memento to store in your kids’ scrapbooks. You can also use the letters or shiny portions of the balloons as backgrounds for your pictures. However, if mementoes are not your thing, why not breathe new life into the deflated balloons by reusing them as wrapping paper? Balloons are associated with celebrations, so you can repurpose them in a new way while maintaining their party spirit. Not only are you doing your part by recycling your balloons, but you are also saving money by forgoing the use of expensive wrapping paper.
You can continue to do your part for the environment by using balloons responsibly. Remember to follow the ‘Don’t Let Go’ policy and always dispose of your balloon properly after the party is over. This way, you get to enjoy the fun that balloons bring to your party while ensuring no wildlife is exposed to harm.
If you are looking to procure balloons for your party, but you are unsure of the balloons’ material and how to dispose of them correctly, you can consider consulting the party shop you intend to purchase the balloons from. Their staff members are familiar with their inventory and can guide you accordingly.