Retired nurse Elsie Brandes-de Veyra, a Steering Committee member of the EcoWaste Coalition, said not many people are aware that discarded butts can pose a heavy toll on the environment.
“Butts may look small but with the Filipinos’ addiction to cigarette and tobacco and the quantity of carelessly thrown butts in the environment, these items can pose real toxic threats to humans and wildlife,” De Veyra stressed.
“Cigarette butts are the most common form of trash and litter around us,” noted Dra. Encarnita Limpin, Executive Director, Framework Convention on Tobacco Control Alliance, Philippines (FCAP).
Limpin urged the public to help clean the environment of cigarette litter and safeguard the health and general welfare of the next generation.
The EcoWaste Coalition has joined forces with FCAP in urging Filipinos to quit the deadly and costly habit of smoking cigarettes and to shift to a healthy and eco-friendly lifestyle.
Discarded butts leak toxic chemicals into the water and soil as they corrode into tiny plastic powder.
Butts are often carried by wind and rain into the storm drains and the seas where they are mistaken as food by birds, fishes and other creatures, causing digestive blockages and the ingestion of toxic chemicals found in the filter such as arsenic, cadmium and lead. Littered butts also contribute significantly to sediment pollution.
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