No Butts About It

By Sandy Breckenridge

One of my favorite pastimes is taking a nice long walk for exercise and fitness.

On weekends we like to locate a new park to check out, or go to a local neighborhood walking path where we can also enjoy nature.

It’s rare to walk in a park that doesn’t have some tell tale signs of smokers revealed by the cigarette butts along the way. A good percentage of smokers are simply uneducated when it comes to tossing butts and the toxic implications left for nature to defend.

Tracking Litter Offenders

A website you may want to visit is LitterButt.com. They even sell stickers one can display to help create more awareness on this topic. As awareness grows many US states are now implementing new litter laws with stiff fines and requirements of community service for butt tossing offenders.

Butts Sticker

Questioner: So What If I Throw My Butts on the Ground? They’re Biodegradable, Right?

Answer: WRONG!! If you throw your cigarette butts on the ground, they eventually find their way to the ocean and other water sheds and YOU are contributing to the most commonly found man-made waste that originates from land!

“The Ocean Conservancy, a nonprofit environmental organization based in Washington, D.C., compiled the results of a shoreline cleanup day conducted by volunteers last year in 68 countries. It covered a combined 34,000 miles of shoreline and collected 7 million pounds of litter, 80 percent of which had been washed from land into the water. Of the 7.7 million items of debris collected worldwide in 2006, cigarettes and cigarette butts accounted for roughly 1.9 million, the sixth consecutive year they have topped the list.

“People think they are biodegradable,” said Kathryn Novak, coordinator for the Florida branch of the Ocean Conservancy. They’re not, so think before flicking that cigarette butt out the car window.”

Tossed Lit Cigarette Butts Can Cause Fires

Another concern over tossing butts is their potential to start deadly fires. They have been known to start major forest fires, burn down retail buildings, complexes, homes, and cause extensive damage to all types of personal property.

We ask that smokers pay attention to how they discard butts. Please be responsible, and snuff those butts in a proper container. The accumulated butts are probably best disposed of in a toxic waste facility! Really … although that isn’t a requirement.

 

 

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