There is no way to truly get rid of cigarette butts. Cigarette filters are made of a plastic called cellulose acetate, which will break into smaller pieces but cannot biodegrade. Cigarette butts meet the qualifications to be labeled as toxic waste, although no city in the United States treats them as such. Currently, the best available disposal option is to place distinguished butts in the trash.
Don’t smoke. It’s really the only way. Not creating the waste in the first place means we don’t have to figure out the best way to dispose of it.
In China, scientists discovered that soaking cigarette butts in water creates a solution that can protect steel pipes used by the oil industry from corroding. In Brazil, a fashion designer, Alexander Guerrero, cleans cigarette butts, dyes them and spins them with sheep wool into clothing. In Ohio, an inventor has a patent pending to turn cigarette butts into adhesives and sealants. All very creative ideas, but probably not very practical for the regular person. Maybe try quitting and saving your health and the health of the environment.
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