Why this petition matters
I want to ban helium balloons and sky lanterns in the UK because of the environmental damage these balloons do. Balloons are made from single used plastic which can take 6 months to 4 years to biodegrade. When they biodegrade into small plastic particles they are so small that we as humans cannot even see them. Animals are harmed by the remnants of balloons, once they finally tumble to the ground, as they can eat them thinking that it is food. The small particles enter the water supply polluting it. For balloons using Helium there is a further disadvantage. We will run out of helium in 20 to 30 years if we continue to consume it at the current rate.
Sky lanterns whilst typically made of paper rise to the sky because of the uplift from their burning bases. However, they also eventually tumble onto the ground and depending on where they fall if still alight can have very serious consequences. For example setting farmers fields and forests alight.
Whilst some countries have already recognised the negative impact of helium balloons and sky lanterns and have restricted or even banned their use in the UK there are no such restrictions. At the moment can release hundreds of thousands of helium balloons or sky lanterns into the atmosphere with no consequence for us. They offer a few minutes of pleasure as they rise towards the moon but quickly disappear out of sight and out of mind. Sadly they have much longer lasting and very detrimental effects on our nature.
We need to start taking responsibility for our actions across the UK, as some areas already have done. For example, helium balloons and sky lanterns are not allowed to be released on the Isle of Man.