With the recent government environmental aims to reduce plastic consumption by limiting or banning its use, unfortunately there is a miss conception regarding balloons. They are not plastic however they are 2 types of Balloons
Mylar balloons are not classified bio-degradable and should not be released. Mylar balloons are made with Mylar nylon, a material developed for use with the US space program. Balloons made from Mylar are often coated with a metallic finish and are available in a variety of shapes and imprinted designs.
Qualatex is a brand of balloons used by many professional such as Entertainers, Balloon artist, room decorators and more. Latex balloons are made from 100% natural latex — not plastic. Qualatex balloons latex are biodegradable, and decompose far faster than Mylar balloons and any other plastics such a package, Beads and bags
Latex balloons come from rubber trees. Latex is collected by cutting the tree’s bark, then catching the latex in a cup. Latex harvesting doesn’t hurt the tree!
Latex balloons are Earth-friendly! Rubber trees grow in rain forests. Latex harvesting discourages deforestation because latex-producing trees are left intact. A tree can produce latex for up to 40 years!
The reason that latex balloon is completely biodegradable. Oxidation is the first step in the breakdown of a latex balloon and begins within approximately one hour of inflation. Oxidation is visible in some types of balloons as a cloudy appearance. This is most evident when the balloon is exposed to direct sunlight, heat or normal outdoor conditions.
This is where people have a misconception over balloons and the types of balloons.
The biggest problem
The main cause is balloon releases for events, charities and weddings as much as they look amazing and great why of raising funds what I know are great causes, but so many use ribbons and the wrong type of balloons that take a long time to degrade.
Animals graze on where they land and they don’t know the difference and the same goes for marine wildlife hence the main cause.
Balloon release have a code of conduct to reduce these issue but with anything like this you cannot eradicate this unless you place a complete ban.
A very good source of information regarding balloon releases can be found here
Balloon Models are SAFE
As mentioned previously professionals use brands like Qualatex that are bio gradable. Models are made for children at birthday parties, events and weddings with a day these are deflated and within an hour start degrading and most parents put them in the bin. Not exposing them to Animals and Marine life.
Yes they do end in landfills but they degrade far quicker than any other waste that end upon in landfills. As professional any balloons that are popped are disposed of properly.
Information Sourced from Nabas, Qualatex, PEBA, Ecopartybox, Wikipedia