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Smokers - No Butts on the Beach Please

Author: 
Chris Satori

The LOVEmyBEACH campaign is calling for visitors and residents to reconsider their disposal of cigarette butts on the beach this summer as part of their ‘Make Your Memories, Take Your Litter’ campaign.

Emma Whitlock, BeachCare Officer for the Fylde coast adds, “A lot of people I speak to think that cigarette butts biodegrade quickly and are relatively small therefore aren’t as bad as other pieces of litter - however this isn’t the case; they take up to 12 years to break down. Plus the plastic fibres and toxic chemicals can have a damaging effect on marine life as well as spoil the way our beaches look.”

In 2016 the Marine Conservation Society Great British Beach Clean survey revealed that cigarette butts made up 7.6% of all litter found; a steep increase of 157% from 2015 and an increase in 129% over the last 5 years.

In the North West, the Sea Life Centre in Blackpool reported a similar proportion of cigarette waste with 18% of litter collected on their monthly beach cleans consisting of cigarette butts.

Allison Ogden-Newton, Keep Britain Tidy CEO adds, “The beaches in the North West are a place of real beauty and an asset to the region. We need to change the way we dispose of our cigarette butts as burying them in the sand doesn’t cover up the fact it’s littering. Stub it out and put them in the bin with your other litter. ”

 

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