LITTER-Picking Activists In Wildlife Balloon Warning

16 October, 2021 | Local

A discarded balloon at Kip Marina and another in a field near Cornalees

AN Inverclyde environmental group is urging the public to be aware of the risks to wildlife posed by discarded balloons, writes David Carnduff.

The Literati Guide to Inverclyde has warned that animals, and especially sea life, often mistake balloons for food. They can be fatal when ingested.

Group spokesperson Vicky Cookson said: “Released balloons return to earth as litter and kill countless animals. When they blow into the Clyde they are mistaken for jellyfish and other food by many species.

“Eating them is inevitably fatal. In terms of waste, balloons are the number one killer of seabirds.”

Dedicated volunteers who take part in regular litter picks co-ordinated by the Literati Guide to Inverclyde now regularly find balloons among waste items blighting the area’s coast and countryside.

The team hopes that by highlighting the issue, the public are made aware there are better alternatives to balloon releases as a way of celebrating a special day or person. The message, they say, is especially relevant with the party season fast approaching.

Meanwhile, the group is forging ahead with its war on litter and fly-tipping by co-ordinating several more clean-ups in the coming weeks and it hopes extra volunteers will be inspired to help.

Details given on the group’s Facebook page highlight the success achieved. In a four-week period across Inverclyde, 218 volunteers amassed 436 hours of litter picking, filling 147 bags which weighed in at a mighty 900kg.

In addition, the Literati Guide to Inverclyde recently hosted a Take Pride in Inverclyde event in the Beacon Arts Centre at which delegates, including school students, outlined how they are working to safeguard the local environment.

People keen to join the Literati Guide’s campaign or check the dates of forthcoming litter picks can do so via the group’s Facebook page.

Pin It on Pinterest