The cost of cigarettes may be incessantly on the rise, but the number of cigarette butts littering the sidewalks, parks, streets, and nature isn’t dwindling.
Approximately 20% of adults in the United States are smokers.
While cigarette butts may be biodegradable, environmental conditions may extend the “lifespan” of the butt to a whopping 15 years. That’s an astounding find concerning a remnant of an already dangerous and environmentally hazardous habit.
The butts of cigarettes are more than ugly blotches littering the scenery. They also contain the filtered chemicals from the cigarettes, and have the potential to leak into water supplies. Smoldering butts have also been prone to cause environmental and residential fires.
Even though there are disposal canisters for this “useless” end of a cigarette, somehow they still find their way to the ground mere inches from buildings on campus, in rivers, gutters, parking lots, driveways, and roadsides.
The increasing number of bans and restrictions as well as the elevating price of tobacco should be an indication that the government and its people aren’t going to let up on smokers any time soon. The situation is intensified by the apparent lack of conscience smokers have when they dispose of their habit wherever they happen to be immediately standing. The implications are numerous. It says a lot about our irresponsible and apathetic smokers. It says a lot about our culture.
Some sort of flag should go up when a smoker, who is standing right beside a disposal canister, opts to drop the butt to the ground instead.
Imagine children playing in a yard filled with these little carcinogenic corpses. If this doesn’t paint a lovely little picture of innocent perfection, then this is one step towards realizing that something needs to be done.
If smokers want to stop being treated like babies, they should start resisting the impulse to act like them.
Statistics from http://www.cdc.gov