In 2022, Keep Roswell Beautiful embarked on a mission to educate residents about the dangers cigarette butts presented to area wildlife.
The campaign reached Roswell residents through billboards, online videos and ballot bins that encouraged residents to "vote with their butts" instead of tossing them in the street.
According to a 2009 study by the University of California-San Francisco, cigarette filters are non-biodegradable and can leach more than 4,000 chemicals into soil and water. One cigarette butt per liter of water kills about half of the fish.
The campaign is not critical of smoking itself, but its goal is to educate on the dangers of improperly disposing of cigarette butts.
Word of the the campaign started with the Roswell Daily Record, and the news traveled as far as Uganda after it was picked up by the Associated Press.
How to help
If you are a smoker, keep a small jar under your car seat to dispose of cigarette butts. Take it one step farther by joining the effort to recycle cigarette butts. Put the collected cigarette butts in a zip bag, toss it in a mailer, and use the free shipping label from Terracycle to send them to be recycled. Learn more about the program and sign up to participate here: https://www.terracycle.com/en-US/brigades/cigarette-waste-recycling
Check out the outreach videos created by the city's Public Affairs Department, which is home to the Keep Roswell Beautiful program.