Why is it that people find it acceptable to release balloons into the atmosphere?

Many of these are filled with helium and are made of latex, foil or plastic.

Even those labelled biodegradable can take four years to break down and are still a hazard to wildlife.

These balloons will travel for miles, with many ending up in our oceans killing marine life and aquatic birds.

Those ending up on land present a danger to farm animals and wildlife.

In our oceans whales, sharks, dolphins and turtles to name a few have all been found with balloon remnants in their stomachs. Many of these creatures will have starved slowly to death, with others becoming entangled in the string and streamers, again leading to a premature, long and lingering death.

Recent reports suggest the amount of balloon litter collected on beaches has more than tripled over the last 10 years, if this figure is correct it is time that balloon releases are banned worldwide.

There are alternative ways to remember or celebrate a loved one such as planting wild flowers which is not only good for the environment and nature, but can give pleasure to others for many years to come.

Nature needs us to help it survive, not destroy it for five minutes of fun watching a balloon float away

Rachel Holding

Chandler's Ford