- Old cigarettes are the most frequently tossed out waste materials nationwide, according to a study conducted in 2009 by Keep America Beautiful (KAB).
- Cigarettes comprise 38% of all litter, and the country throws out 195 million pounds of cigarette butts improperly every year.
- Cities across the U.S. are implementing programs in an attempt to reduce the proliferation of cigarettes in the environment. Portland, ME; Salem, MA; and New Orleans, LA have all have programs to reduce cigarette debris from tarnishing the environment.
Keep America Beautiful (KAB) is making cleaning up old cigarettes more attractive by offering local governments, park and recreation areas, and private associations access to a total of 50 grants worth $275,000. KAB said that its Cigarette Litter Prevention Program reduces littler from cigarettes by 50%, based on data collected 4-6 months after the programs were enacted.
TerraCycle has also launched similar recycling programs, partnering with various cities to reduce the volume of litter created by cigarettes. Both Vancouver and New Orleans got on board with the plan to help keep their cities clean by targeting cigarette waste, while an arena in Nashville, TN collects and ships used cigarettes to TerraCycle for recycling and composting.