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A rising concern? After straws, balloons get more scrutiny

FILE- In this Oct. 14, 2017, file photo balloons are released in Memorial Stadium before an NCAA college football game between Indiana and Michigan in...
FILE- In this Oct. 5, 2017, file photo Annette Antwi, of Newark, N.J., releases balloons while celebrating her birthday in front of a fountain at Bran...
FILE- In this Sept. 11, 2010, file photo red balloons fill the sky after Nebraska scored its first touchdown against Idaho in their NCAA college footb...
FILE- In this Sept. 26, 2015, file photo, balloons are released after a Nebraska touchdown against Southern Miss during the first half of an NCAA coll...
FILE-This Oct. 19, 2013, file photo shoes Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney leading the team down the lane before the first half of an NCAA college foot...

FILE- In this Oct. 14, 2017, file photo balloons are released in Memorial Stadium before an NCAA college football game between Indiana and Michigan in...

FILE- In this Oct. 5, 2017, file photo Annette Antwi, of Newark, N.J., releases balloons while celebrating her birthday in front of a fountain at Bran...

FILE- In this Sept. 11, 2010, file photo red balloons fill the sky after Nebraska scored its first touchdown against Idaho in their NCAA college footb...

FILE- In this Sept. 26, 2015, file photo, balloons are released after a Nebraska touchdown against Southern Miss during the first half of an NCAA coll...

FILE-This Oct. 19, 2013, file photo shoes Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney leading the team down the lane before the first half of an NCAA college foot...

NEW YORK (AP) — Now that plastic straws may be headed for extinction, could Americans' love of balloons get deflated too?

The celebration of releasing balloons into the air has long bothered environmentalists, who say the pieces that fall back to earth can be deadly to seabirds and turtles that eat them. So as companies vow to banish plastic straws, there are signs balloons will be among the products getting more scrutiny, even though they're a very small part of environmental pollution.

College football powerhouse Clemson University is ending its tradition of releasing 10,000 balloons into the air before games. In Virginia, a campaign that urges alternatives to balloon releases at weddings is expanding. And a Rhode Island town outright banned the sale of all balloons this year, citing harm to marine life.


Updated : 2021-08-06 02:15 GMT+08:00