Go into some Amarillo party stores for some helium filled balloons, and there's a good chance they'll be out of helium. That's because currently, there is a world-wide helium shortage, and helium prices have jumped 135% in just a year.

U.S. party supply store, Party City saw its share price shrink 30% in the last six months due to the short supply according to CNBC. This isn't the first time there's been a helium shortage, in 1958, the balloons used in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade were filled with air rather than helium due to a shortage.

We have all inhaled helium and changed our voices, and of course it’s used in balloons, but actually helium is primarily used to cool superconducting magnets for medical MRI scanners. It is also used silicon wafers and solar cells.

In 1925, the U.S. congress passed the Helium Act of 1925 which had two purposes: it created a National Helium Reserve here in Amarillo and it banned the export of helium. Because of that ban, and the U.S.'s monopoly on helium production, airships, such as the Hindenburg, were forced to use hydrogen as their lifting gas. Because of hydrogen's high flammability, this led to the Hindenburg Disaster on May 6, 1937.

So Basically, when it’ gone. It’s gone. Helium in a non-renewing gas.

Sorry to burst your balloon.

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