NTU club pops plan to release balloons

NTU club pops plan to release balloons

SINGAPORE - A plan to release several hundred balloons at a Marina Barrage charity carnival was burst after environmentalists convinced organisers of the harm that could be done to marine life.

Nature enthusiasts had voiced concerns that, after the helium balloons deflate and fall in the sea, they would prove deadly to sea turtles and other creatures in Singapore's waters that mistake them for food such as jellyfish.

Less than a day after receiving this feedback on their website and Facebook page last Tuesday, the Nanyang Technological University (NTU) Cultural Activities Club (CAC) decided to scrap the balloon release as a show of solidarity.

They had planned the release at sunset on June 15 as part of organising Arts From The Heart, a carnival in support of the Children's Cancer Foundation.

A statement posted on the event's Facebook page early last Wednesday morning read: "We have been receiving several concerns over our proposed release of balloons at our event and have made a decision to stop the mass release of balloons in a bid to care for the environment."

In its place, "other suitable, environmentally friendly alternatives" to mark the event will be looked at, said Mr Kenneth Lo, chairman of the event's organising committee.

NTU CAC's president Joel Lim told The Sunday Times no helium balloons would be used at the event, only standard, air-filled ones.

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