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Cig Butt Campaign

Cigarette butts continue to be Ireland’s biggest litter scourge accounting for almost half of discarded waste according to recent research by the National Litter Pollution Monitoring system.  The volunteers with Dromiskin Tidy Towns would certainly agree with this analysis given the number of butts collected on daily litter patrols - unbelievably 330 butts were collected within the core village area on one daily litter pick recently with in excess of 200 collected most days.

Quite often cigarette butts are not considered by smokers to be litter and are also assumed to be biodegradable but this is not the case.  Cigarette butts consist of a plastic called cellulose acetate and can remain in the environment for very long periods of time in the form of micro plastics.  When ingested, the hazardous chemicals in micro plastics present threats to wildlife including birds and plants.  Discarded butts can also leach toxic chemicals into the environment and contaminate our water supplies. 

Dromiskin is pleased to be a participant in Louth’s Vote with your Butt campaign which was officially launched in the village by the Chairperson of Louth County Council, Councillor Paula Butterly and the Tidy Towns Committee was delighted to also be joined by Cllrs Marianne Butler, Kevin Meenan and Robert Nash in support of this awareness raising initiative.

The Butt Box will ask smokers to dispose of their butts while voting for their preferred public space - Dromiskin Heritage Park or Ginnety’s Pond. It will be interesting to see if the initiative will lead to a reduction in cigarette butt litter as it has been proven to do elsewhere in the country.  Pat Mulligan, Chairman, Dromiskin Tidy Towns commented “some people may see the initiative as somewhat gimmicky but if it is a gimmick that creates awareness and encourages smokers to dispose of their butts in a proper manner then it is an initiative certainly worth supporting.  Our volunteers find litter control one of the most frustrating and repetitive elements of our work programme and one that really shouldn’t take up so much time if people disposed of litter properly as required by the law”

Councillor Paula Butterly paid tribute to Dromiskin Tidy Towns and all the tidy towns volunteers in the county who are relentless in their efforts to get to grips with litter despite the ongoing and time consuming challenges faced on a daily basis.

Dromiskin Tidy Towns would like to highlight that cigarette butts are litter and offences are subject to an on the spot fine of €150.

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