They may look harmless, but 4.5 trillion cigarette filters are littered worldwide each year making them the most abundant plastic pollutant on Earth. They are not biodegradable but are made of plastic fibers (cellulose acetate) They can take up to 10 years to break down into tiny pieces of plastic- microplastics – which are hazard to our environment. Even worse, the toxic compounds in cigarette butts, including formaldehyde, nicotine, arsenic, and lead, are leached into the natural environment, far outlasting the life of the butts themselves. Studies have shown that 𝗮 𝘀𝗶𝗻𝗴𝗹𝗲 𝗰𝗶𝗴𝗮𝗿𝗲𝘁𝘁𝗲 𝗯𝘂𝘁𝘁 𝗹𝗲𝗳𝘁 𝗶𝗻 𝗮 𝗹𝗶𝘁𝗲𝗿 𝗼𝗳 𝘄𝗮𝘁𝗲𝗿 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝟰𝟴 𝗵𝗼𝘂𝗿𝘀 𝗸𝗶𝗹𝗹𝘀 𝗺𝗼𝘀𝘁 𝗼𝗳 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗳𝗶𝘀𝗵 𝗶𝗻 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝘄𝗮𝘁𝗲𝗿. Imagine the impact of 4.5 trillion cigarette butts if 𝟭 𝗰𝗶𝗴𝗮𝗿𝗲𝘁𝘁𝗲 𝗯𝘂𝘁𝘁 𝗰𝗮𝗻 𝗽𝗼𝗹𝗹𝘂𝘁𝗲 𝟱𝟬𝟬 𝗹𝗶𝘁𝗲𝗿𝘀 𝗼𝗳 𝘄𝗮𝘁𝗲𝗿 𝗲𝗮𝗰𝗵 𝗱𝗮𝘆. Just another example of the far-reaching devastation the tobacco industry continues to cause.
The single action you can take that will make a real impact on this problem is to 𝗾𝘂𝗶𝘁 𝘀𝗺𝗼𝗸𝗶𝗻𝗴! Going tobacco-free will protect your health and improve the health of the planet.
This message is posted in partnership with the African American Tobacco Control Leadership Council (AATCLC) to help expand awareness of tobacco harm and their movement to end commercial tobacco use.