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Say no to sky lanterns this New Year’s Eve

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Sky lanterns against a dark skySky lanterns are a huge danger to property, land and livestock, and have already been banned in Austria, Spain, Germany, New Zealand, Brazil, Australia and some places in the USA. Back in July, many farmers and some MPs campaigned for them to be banned, after a sky lantern started a blaze in a West Midlands recycling plant. Since then, there was also a devastating fire at Croft Farm Leisure Park. Despite this, the call to ban them has been so far rejected by Downing Street. However, their use is widely discouraged by public officials and fire brigades. They were banned at Glastonbury festival, because they pose a risk to tents, buildings, the land and livestock. They were also banned at Primrose Hill on bonfire night, which is a popular place to release them, against the backdrop of the London skyline.

The danger

Many people using Chinese lanterns don’t realise how harmful they are. By using sky lanterns, you’re releasing a naked flame (with highly flammable paper!) into the wind, to roam freely across the county. You’ve no control over where the lantern lands and the wind can cause sparks to fly onto the paper. Lanterns that land in a field could get chopped up by a farmer’s machinery and chewed by animals. In some areas there’s the worry that they’ll scare some animals in zoos. Please, do not them use for your New Year celebrations.  No doubt they’ll already be banned in some public places. However, wherever you release them, you’ve no way of knowing where they’ll end up, or what damage they’ll cause. photo credit: Louis Lin via photopin cc
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