Followup ~ Jar of Cigarette Butts, SusieQ Web Site

According to

• Cigarette butts are the number one trash item found worldwide.

• Over 176,000,000 pounds of discarded cigarette butts in the U.S. annually.

• Butts continually release toxins and take up to 25 years to decompose.

• Wildlife is adversely affected.

It seemed that some one was interested in the jar I had placed in one of the “shoe cubbies” down by the entrance area to the beach by our condo.  I had been collecting and counting the butts for several weeks, averaging about 30 a day and placing them in the jar.  Many of the butts came from the wrack area (high tide line), but there were lots that were obviously left there by our residents or friends/guests of our residents.

I contacted our condo board president and asked if I might give a short presentation to the residents.  He agreed to give me 10 minutes.

I prepared a slide show including photos of the trash I had picked up beachside, from the seawall to the ocean’s edge.  I also included photos of the beautiful sunrises I enjoy so much. I shared the information about the average cigarette tally.   

The mornings after my “litter” slide presentation to the board and residents, I went out as usual to collect and count cigarette butts.  Remarkably the number of butts in the areas where I’d typically find groups of fresh butts, there were none, or very few.  Yes, I still find butts, but the number has dropped by about 20/day.  It’s been that way for the last month. I feel like that talk shifted something. I’m so glad.  I don’t know who was leaving their butts in the sand, and frankly don’t care to know.  I’m just so pleased that that is not happening like it used to. I really want to believe I made an impact.

Make a difference. Contemplate giving thanks we live in an environment of choices.