Monday, September 25, 2006

Discarded butts

For three straight days, I've noticed someone tossing a cigarette butt out of their car window. Now, I've never smoked. But I sorta get the desire to get rid of the butt. Afterall, they are quite stinky. Who wants an ashtray full of dog ends?

But here's the thing. The butt dropped by someone has a good chance of seeping into the water table. True, one little butt won't do a lot to the environment: but what about billions of little butts? In 2005, there were 378 billion cigarettes sold in the US. Whether you smoke or not, you don't need me to go over all the things in a typical cigarette. So when someone tosses it, that stuff is unleashed on the world. Specifically, into the water table through rain.

Clearly, as this interesting Japanese sign suggests, it's a problem in Japan as well. Here are some more of the ads. If you're reading this in Buffalo, please stop throwing your butts on the ground.

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