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@NickMallos @PaulLedesma Thanks for your response. But, my first question is still unanswered. How does recycling butts help the ocean? The issue is not landfill diversion of millions cigarette butts. The issue is improper disposal of billions of butts in the environment. For the sake of arguing this point, we'll leave aside issues of recylability, such as commodity prices and other factors that would have to do with an economically sustainable business model. Let's just focus on the gap in reasoning between whether or not something is recycled and what that has to do with whether or not that thing (a cigarette butt) gets littered. The only nexus between the two is a deposit such those on beverage containers in many states. Unless someone proposes a deposit on butts, there really is no connection. Reynolds-TerraCycle program looks like a token program at best. But, it is only dealing with the problem after the fact and is disconnected from the act of littering.
The business case for this program appears to be fundamentally flawed. In brief, butts -- even after being collected and cleaned (a very expensive process relative to their commodity value) -- aren't worth very much. They will compete in a limited marketplace with other low grade plastics. The best market for these butts might be as incineration fuel. How many people think burning toxic butts for energy is a good idea?
Cigarette butt recycling does nothing for litter.
2 years, 4 months ago on It’s Not My Fault I’m a Butt Guy
I'm very puzzled by the lack of critical scrutiny this story is getting. Ask yourselves two questions: (1) What do butts on the beach have to do with butts in the landfill? (2) What happens if this really catches on and the BILLIONS of butts start getting collected? Is big tobacco going to continue footing the bill? For how long?