Belleville Implements Cigarette Recycling Program
Posted: September 12, 2018
Belleville is keeping cigarette butts off the street and out of landfills. Partnering with TerraCycle Canada’s Cigarette Recycling Program, Belleville will ensure cigarette butts are properly disposed of and are given a second life through recycling.
“Cigarette butts are one of the most littered items in the world and they pose a real threat to our environment,” says General Manager, Transportation and Operations Services, Joseph Reid. “The plastic filters soak up chemicals, get tossed and release those chemicals – often into our waterways. By partnering with TerraCycle we’re proud to bring a sustainable solution to Belleville.”
TerraCycle is an international recycling company that finds innovative solutions for materials not typically accepted at municipal recycling facilities. The waste collected through the Cigarette Waste Recycling Program is recycled into a variety of industrial products, such as plastic lumber. Any remaining tobacco and paper is recycled as compost. In exchange for reducing cigarette waste, Belleville earns points for cigarette butts sent to TerraCycle, and can later redeem these points as a cash donation to any nonprofit organization.
“Every year, billions of cigarette butts end up in dumpsters and landfills, or get tossed as litter on shorelines, parks, and sidewalks across Canada” said TerraCycle CEO Tom Szaky. “We give a big ‘thank you’ to the more than two thousand locations that have helped us collect over 105 million cigarette butts through this recycling program.”
Belleville’s cigarette recycling has been coordinated by the City’s Green Task Force and community advocates for waste reduction. There are currently three butt disposals, located throughout the downtown area at: Century Place, The Duke’s Pub and the footbridge gazebo. Councillor and Green Task Force Chairperson Egerton Boyce expressed his excitement, seeing another green program implemented in Belleville. “The Green Task Force continues to seek out sustainable projects for Belleville. In this instance we’re taking the numerous cigarette butts that litter our parks and streets and giving them a chance to be recycled into something useful. With the partners we have involved this initiative has the potential to become very successful.”
TerraCycle Canada, a Progressive Waste Solutions partner, takes difficult-to-recycle packaging and turns it into a variety of raw materials that are sold to manufacturers to produce new products. Founded in 2001, TerraCycle is the world leader in the collection and reuse of non-recyclable post-consumer waste. In 21 countries, the waste is collected through programs that donate money to schools and charities. To learn more, visit www.terracycle.ca.