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Don’t Let Go!

Plastic Free St Albans‘ new Don’t Let Go! campaign and petition is inspired by the Marine Conservation Society, and seeks to prevent local balloon releases, and to discourage the use of balloons by businesses as promotional materials.

Update! Film screening of Rubber Jellyfish Thurs 28th March at The Inn on the Park, St Albans. Brand new Australian documentary about the environmental damage caused by balloons. Tickets £6/2 conc are limited. You have the option to dine as well.. Book early see more information and booking here.

Thanks to Emma Tyers from Plastic Free St Albans for our guest blog this week – all about balloons…

Why do we want to stop this?

When you let a balloon go, you’re littering upwards. Why is this acceptable, when most of us wouldn’t dream of dropping litter on the ground?

Latex balloons are often marketed as biodegradable, but in practice take many years to break down. They also often have plastic ribbons attached to them, which do not biodegrade.


Thanks to Ver Valley Society for photograph.

Balloons and their ribbons are very frequently found as river and beach litter, where they kill wildlife. Sea creatures and birds mistake them for jellyfish, blocking their intestines, and animals get entangled in the ribbons.

It’s also a waste of helium, a finite resource needed for medical purposes.

Are we just out to spoil your fun?

No! By all means use balloons for parties, but please make sure you hold onto them, and dispose of them correctly. This campaign is focussed on preventing mass littering events, not spoiling 6 year olds’ birthdays.

If you do however want to stop using balloons completely, there are lots of lovely, creative alternatives available. Check out the Balloons Blow website for ideas.

We need your help!

Sign the petition here to Herts County Council, to ban balloon releases on their land.

In line with the MCS Don’t Let Go! campaign, we have included sky lanterns too, because they also pose a threat to animals through ingestion and entanglement, and the additional hazard of fire.

Businesses, Schools, organisations: Sign up to the Don’t Let Go Campaign

  • If you run a local business, school or other organisation, please email Plastic Free St Albans to sign up to the Don’t Let Go campaign, and include the following in the Comment field (amend as appropriate):

“We pledge to permanently stop balloon and sky lantern releases at events under our control, and to not use balloons as promotional materials for our business”

balloonprincess ver valley

Photo taken by Ver Valley Society while clearing the River Ver.

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