Balloon releases harm wildlife

Prajal Prasai, [email protected]

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Some of the student organizations on campus, in the recent days, have organized balloon releasing events in the name of various social causes. The actions of these students are truly noble, but the way it is done, the releasing of balloons, needs to be called into question.
Who would think that something as simple as releasing balloons into the sky could be so detrimental to the environment? Apparently, it is one of the major sources of litter at our local Black Bayou lake, according to
Many people claim that releasing balloon is a form of littering as the balloons will eventually fall down to the ground polluting the environment. But, the question arises why is it so emphasized than other when there are so many other forms of littering.
It is simply because the chunks of balloons and strings attached to them have become serious threats to the wildlife as they tend to choke on those pieces of waste and ultimately die.
This problem has gotten so serious that some states in the U.S., such as California, Florida and Connecticut have made rules specifically for releasing balloons. The law ranges from allowing certain individual, groups of people or any organizations to release certain number of balloons within a fixed time period to completely banning it.
Rather banning releasing balloons as the method to stop this crisis, raising awareness should be the first and foremost path of action.
Warhawks, we know better.
When we are trying to spotlight some of the issues, may it be breast cancer or suicide awareness, we have to be aware that pollution and its effect on environment is also a serious issue prevalent in the current context.
College students, who have had certain level of education, know that one can exercise their rights as long as it does not violate the others. Our generation, so distant from the nature, should come to the realization that there are other creatures sharing the same earth.
As humans, who are intellectually superior, it is our sole responsibility to be sensible to living beings other than ourselves. Our future without the animals is grim.
The hopeful thing is it does not take much effort at all. Switching to methods other than releasing balloons to voice your beliefs is the easiest option.
People have now started switching to significantly less harmful ways such as making bubbles, planting trees and floating flowers along the river.
All of these are feasible in our university as we have a large water body as well as places to plant trees.
So, what’s the whole point of this argument?
The most important thing to take away from this reading is that there are more than one ways to do the same thing, one should opt for the path that is best for all, no matter how rigorous it is.
After all, we do want to hand down this planet in good shape to our children’s hand in the near future, right?