From Tim O'Reilly:
Good Q?, the kind politicians are loathe to answer RT @jamesoreilly: "Is it right to waste helium on party balloons?" http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-24903034 …
and from the linked article:
Some scientists believe a finite resource that could one day run out should not be used for party balloons.
"We're going to be looking back and thinking, I can't believe people just used to fill up their balloons with it, when it's so precious and unique," says Cambridge University chemist Peter Wothers, who has called for the end to helium-filled party balloons.
"I suspect the amount that is used in party balloons is quite small compared to the other main uses of it," says Dr Wothers.
"But it's just a rather trivial use of something we should be valuing a little bit more."
Is helium being used on party balloons at the expense of other purposes?
Related question about whether there is a helium shortage, and whether we are at risk of running out of helium forever: Is there a worldwide helium shortage?