Cigarette Litter Prevention


Get the butts off the beach

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Cigarette Litter Prevention Program

Keep Keith County Beautiful has adopted Keep America Beautiful’s  guidelines and has been awarded the  CLPP grant for 2019. The Cigarette Litter Prevention Program (CLPP), is the nation’s largest program aimed at reducing cigarette litter. Since its inception, the program has been implemented in more than 1,700 U.S. communities.

By providing people with easily accessible information and educational tools, as well as funding for ash receptacles and the distribution of pocket or portable ashtrays, educating the public and ensuring a cleaner tomorrow. 

An effective local Cigarette Litter Prevention Program includes four proven, field-tested solutions or strategies for reducing cigarette butt litter:

  • Encourage enforcement of litter laws, including cigarette litter;
  • Raise awareness about the issue using public service messages;
  • Place ash receptacles at transition points such as entrances to public buildings; and
  • Distribute pocket or portable ashtrays to adult smokers.
For inquiries regarding applying for a Cigarette Litter Prevention Program grant or for additional information, please contact Keep America Beautiful at [email protected].

Cigarette butt litter and your community

Although it’s one of the smallest pieces of litter, communities report cigarette butts, including cigar tips, are the top item collected during local cleanups. All that litter has an impact on the places in which we live:

  • CREATING BLIGHT: Cigarette butt litter is unsightly. It accumulates in corners, gutters, and outside doorways and bus shelters. Litter in a business district, waterfront, on roadways and recreation areas, and other signs of disorder create a sense that no one cares about the community.
  • HARMFUL TO WATERWAYS Littered cigarette butts and cigar tips are easily carried in storm water runoff through drainage systems and eventually to local streams, rivers, and waterways. Cigarette filters contain cellulose acetate, a form of plastic that does not biodegrade and can persist in the environment.
  • COSTLY TO CLEAN UP Cigarette litter requires additional sidewalk and street sweeping, greenway and park maintenance, and storm water system upkeep. Retailers, property owners, and municipalities also bear the expense of cigarette litter cleanup at entrances, exits, and adjacent sidewalks and parking lots.

Tips to reduce Cigarette butt litter


Carry a portable or pocket ashtray when smoking outside. Encourage smokers to be aware of where their cigarette will be discarded when they light up. Whether smokers are outside public buildings, in parks, on beaches or city sidewalks, a little planning will reduce the number of butts
and cigar tips that end up on the ground.

Use a proper receptacle to dispose of cigarette butts and cigar tips. Ash receptacles are needed at the places where people must stop smoking before they proceed. These are called “transition points.” Ash receptacles at transition points remind smokers to properly dispose of cigarette butts.

Don’t throw butts out car windows. Place cigarette butts and cigar tips in a car ashtray, a portable auto ashtray (which fits in the cup holder), or a container with a secure top.

Be aware of local litter ordinances. Many communities have litter ordinances that include cigarette butt litter. These are enforceable and carry penalties.

Want to get involved?

Contact us to volunteer, partner, sponsor, or donate.