The following information was released by the City of Seal Beach.
Cigarette butts are a pollution problem.
On Main Street, cigarette butts are occasionally thrown into planter boxes, on the sidewalk, and gutters. When it rains, the cigarette debris is swept away and often ends up in the storm drains which lead directly to the ocean. This has detrimental effects to human and marine life.
The City does the best it can to make certain these areas are well maintained and the Surfrider Foundation’s Cigarette Canister Program has helped support the City’s efforts by providing a place for smokers to dispose of their cigarette butts.
In 2012, the Surfrider Foundation approached the City and asked to install a few canisters on Main Street in strategic locations. Those canisters were placed on a trial basis to assess whether there would be a noticeable decrease in cigarette debris, as well as to examine the amount of maintenance involved with each canister. It was determined that the canisters were very effective in reducing the amount of cigarette debris and the amount of maintenance was found to be minimal. As a result of the success of this campaign, the City increased the number of canisters to six.
It should also be mentioned that in the past year, the canisters have been emptied and maintained by a local resident of Old Town, John Griffith and Surfrider representatives. The City would like to thank Surfrider and John for their efforts in improving the City for everyone. The City will now take over the maintenance of the six canisters along Main Street.
Lastly, Surfrider did not dispose of the collected cigarette butts at a local landfill nor will the City once it takes over maintenance of the canisters. The cigarette butts will continue to be sent to a company in Texas that recycles them and uses the materials for other uses.
Should you have any questions about the project, please contact the Public Works Department at 562-431-2527 ext. 1317.
Photo by Katie Wiedel of one of the cigarette butt canisters on Main Street in Old Town Seal Beach.
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