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Latex Balloon Biodegradability Testing

Latex Balloon Biodegradability Testing

Many people have expressed interest in conducting testing on the biodegradability of latex balloons. Whether you are a member of PEBA (Pro Environment Balloon Alliance), or not, it would be fantastic to have you involved. I have tried to set the test up using correct “Scientific Method”.  Who’s in?

The test consists of:

  • 1 x open 13 litre container (Bunnings), or similar, with a couple of holes drilled in the base, filled to three quarters with soil from your local area.
  • 9 x Latex Balloon (Manufacturer of Your Choice)

1 x Standard White

1 x Fashion Black

1 x Standard Yellow

1 x Jewel / Crystal Ruby Red

1 x Diamond Clear

1 x Jewel / Crystal Emerald Green

1 x Pearl / Metallic Pink

1 x Pearl / Metallic Sapphire Blue

1 x Pearl / Metallic Lime Green

  • The balloons should be inflated to size and then let down. This is because most balloons that find their way into the environment have been inflated.
  • The variety of balloons and colours has been selected because experience tells us that some balloons (e.g. darker colours and Jewel / Crystal) biodegrade faster than others and it is necessary to measure the difference.
  • The container should not be covered and should be left outside under all weather conditions.
  • Please photograph your experiment every 30 days (or less) and take note of any changes, etc.
  • The data collected from these tests conducted under different soil and weather conditions will be invaluable.
  • I will also be doing two separate tests, using beach sand and sea water.
  • Data updates and all results will be published on www.peba.com.au


2 thoughts on “Latex Balloon Biodegradability Testing

Jesse the Wind WandererPosted on  1:37 pm - Oct 24, 2017

I commend you on your experiment and will join in performing the test myself. However, such a test would not, in my mind, be complete without full soil testing. My concern is about what chemicals or heavy metals could possibly exist in latex or the pigments used whether they break down into bio-friendly compounds or not.

    JessePosted on  7:31 am - Oct 27, 2017

    Hi Jesse, Really appreciate your interest and support, Mate. We are running this fairly simple test to satisfy local curiosity and to draw traffic and attention to our cause. The European Balloon & Party Council (EBPC) are currently conducting Latex Balloon Biodegradability under strict laboratory conditions. They have formed a fantastic relationship with PEBA and will share their findings, including full soil testing, when the experiments are complete. Kindest regards, Brian

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