Keep New Hanover Beautiful Collects, Recycles One Million Cigarette Butts

by | Nov 30, 2020

North Carolina affiliate hits major milestone in preventing cigarette butt litter

Keep New Hanover Beautiful (KNHB) announced in October that it had collected and recycled one million cigarette butts, totaling 1,000 pounds, via cigarette butt canisters.

With the support of the Keep America Beautiful Cigarette Litter Prevention Program, KNHB has placed more than 200 cigarette canisters across the area in recent years. KNHB Executive Director Dick Brightman says the local effort is driven solely by volunteers.

“We want to give a very special thanks to the [University of North Carolina Wilmington] Environmental Studies Department and the hardworking group of interns who drive this campaign forward and make it sustainable,” KNHB writes in a recent newsletter.

The students and interns are responsible for emptying area cigarette butt receptacles weekly. Once they collect a certain weight, the discarded butts are shipped to TerraCycle, which recycles the materials into plastic pellets and compost materials.

Brightman also says KNHB recently joined Keep Brunswick County Beautiful, also located in North Carolina, to distribute 50 cigarette receptacles to a local nonprofit called Sunset Vision.

“[Sunset Vision is] planning on installing these canisters at the beach access points as well as outside local businesses,” said KNHB in its newsletter. “These 50 units are only the beginning of their cigarette butt litter campaign!”

For a look at the businesses participating in the KNHB Cigarette Litter Recycling program, click here.