Local News

New Campaign Aims To Reduce Cigarette Butts In Downtown Raleigh

Posted July 10, 2006

— A two-block area in Downtown Raleigh will be the focus of a new campaign designed to prevent cigarette butts from landing on the ground.

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    Cigarette Litter Prevention Program

    In the next few weeks, the Downtown Raleigh Alliance will distribute about 1,000 portable ashtrays near Fayetteville Street as part of a pilot program by Keep America Beautiful to reduce litter.

    Nationwide, it is estimated that 34 percent of litter is cigarette butts. Organizers hope the ashtrays will keep smokers from carrying around their butts while they look for a receptacle.

    "They can put it out in this little tray and carry it with them," said Kris Larson, deputy director of the Downtown Alliance.

    As part of the campaign, trays will be installed on the top of all trash cans in the area for smokers to dispose of the butts.

    The Downtown Alliance plans to try to measure the amount of cigarette butts on the ground before, during and after the program to determine just how effective the program will be.

    Raleigh was one of several cities chosen to participate in the national campaign because of the state's history with tobacco. An estimated 23.1 percent of North Carolina residents, or about 2 million people, smoke.

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