Every year 4.5 Trillion cigarette butts are littered worldwide, with a significant percentage finding their way into our oceans and onto our shores.
In fact, 30-40% of all items collected in coastal and urban clean ups are cigarette butts.
Most people do not realise that cigarette filters within cigarette butts are made from a type of plastic called cellulose acetate which doesn’t biodegrade.
In 2003, The Dubai Municipality introduced a 500 AED fine for littering with cigarette butts. This fine has doubled to 1000 AED with six black points for drivers flicking cigarette butts onto UAE roads.
Not only being unpleasant aesthetically, cigarette filters are comprised of thousands of chemical ingredients, including arsenic, lead, nicotine and ethyl phenol, all of which leak into aquatic environments.
Not only is smoking bad for the environment however, smoking killed more than 2,900 people in the UAE in 2016 and cost the country $569 million in lost productivity and health care costs, according to the latest report on global smoking.
In 2016 it was reported that, 748 cigarettes were smoked per person aged over 15 years, per year in the United Arab Emirates.