Made from Recycled
March 7, 2011 - EcoTech Displays, a company that has mounted hundreds of advertising-covered ashtrays outside bars and restaurants in New York has a goal to have raw material on hand whenever scientists figure out an economical way to recycle cigarette butts.
To this end EcoTech Displays has mounted hundreds of advertising-covered ashtrays outside bars and restaurants. All those filthy butts don't go in the trash, however. After a day of emptying ashtrays around the city, Gabbidon and his colleagues bring the filters to a warehouse in Staten Island and carefully store them away.
"It's our mission to make sure they don't go into the landfill and don't go into the water stream," said EcoTech's spokesman, Larry Dell, as he wrinkled his nose at bags full of about 26,000 sodden filters. "When you see it in this form, it really gets to you what a polluting substance it is. We don't want to add to the pollution."
Queens Assemblyman Michael DenDekker hopes to spur that industry by requiring them to be recycled in New York.
He has introduced a bill to set up statewide recycling centers for cigarette butts, with a penny-per-smoke deposit added to the cost of every pack - hoping that creates a financial incentive for people to collect and return them. "We have to look at it and see if it's feasible," DenDekker said.
According to Mr. DenDekker’s office, more than 176 million pounds of cigarette butts are discarded each year in this country (USA).
Reference: New cigarette filter recycling program can significantly reduce pollutants in local landfills by Adam Lisberg, NY Daily News, 3/6/2011.