A new bill moving through the Illinois House would make it illegal to hold the outdoor release mass amounts of balloons, such as at a wedding or funeral.

House Bill 418 would include balloon releases as celebratory gatherings, weddings, funerals and birthday parties. The infringement of the rule could result in a fine of up to $500.

Rep. Sam Yingling (D-Round Beach) introduced the bill as an amendment to the Environmental Protection Act, intended to "prevent organized release of large quantities of…balloons.”

“Obviously, there are significant ecological impacts and there’s also significant infrastructure impact when these balloons land,” Yingling told The Pantagraph. “Not only are they dangerous for our habitat but they also complicate our storm sewer systems and our water systems.”

 

I can't be the only one who has looked up in the sky after I see hundreds of balloons float by and wonder where they go. I mean, they can't possibly make it all the way to space, right? Or do they? But then where do they go - the sun?

The Illinois Energy and Environment Committee approved the bill on Monday, saying balloons made of plastic and rubber can be harmful to animals and the environment.

If approved, the ban would go into effect on January 1st, 2022.

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