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Balloon Brigade 2023

Strategic Insight

Releasing Balloons Is Trashy


There’s nothing wrong with balloons. Our behavior with them is the problem. Releasing balloons to float away and land on the ocean or the ground somewhere we can’t see them is trashy behavior and all of us need to stop doing it. It took a public service campaign a decade to stop people from throwing trash out the windows of their cars while they’re driving. Letting balloons go is the same as throwing a chip bag out the window of a car. Balloons just take longer to hit the ground.


With this campaign we wanted to help people make the connection that what they might see as a beautiful gesture is, at the end of the day, just littering.


To help visualize the issue for people, we depicted balloons as other types of garbage. Things you could quickly determine you would never throw in the ocean.


We added the line “Releasing balloons is trashy,” with a double entendre to make it fun and drive home the point that balloons don’t need to change, we do.


Balloon Brigade is a 501(c)3 dedicated to removing floating plastic and other debris from our oceans through direct action efforts.

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