Save the Environment: One Cigarette Butt at a Time

Happy Earth Day!

I showed the lake some luv yesterday by helping to clear the shoreline of litter and garbage.  I spent 3 strenuous hours collecting bits of garbage and was astonished by the sheer number of cigarette filters, bottle caps and plastic debris I found.

It actually enrages me to see so much litter around the lakefront parks and shoreline,  don't people realize that we get our drinking water from this very same lake? Don't they realize that when they throw that horribly toxic plastic bottle on the grass, that it leaches toxins into the ground, and then the wind also carries it into the lake, polluting our drinking water and decreasing wildlife populations?

Here are some scary stats from the 2012 Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup:

Weight of litter removed- 136,036 kg 
Distance of shoreline cleaned- 3,102 km
Top 5 Litter Items 
1. Cigarettes/Cigarette Filters           416,955
2. Food Wrappers                            98,835
3. Plastic Bags                                  69,790
4. Caps and Lids                              69,725
5. Plastic Beverage Bottles             38,202

Trash bags filled                               12,895
Recycling bags filled                          3,639

My biggest issue is when people throw their cigarette butts on the ground, out of their car windows, into sewer drains, etc... I've seen all of these things happen, and when I've said something to that person, they've looked at me like I'm absolutely nuts! Where do they think their garbage is going to end up? Wait a minute, do people think Cigarette butts aren't litter?

The awesome part is that cigarette butts can be recycled into packaging, so please speak up and let people know that littering those butts around is a big no no. If you want to learn more about how you can get involved with cigarette butt recycling visit the Cigarette Waste Brigade website.

Warning: These next two images are extremely gross. If you are disgusted easily, don't think about the fact that instead of sand, our beaches have a fine layer of plastic garbage lining their shores. Sorry to be so graphic, it was the only way I could show you the devastation.


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