KickButtColumbus! is an annual spring highway ramp clean up event created to remove blighted conditions from our city's exit and entry ramps after winter thaw and raise awareness about the hazards of cigarette butt litter to the environment. KickButtColumbus! takes place the third Saturday in March.
Cigarette Butts are Litter Too!
Did you know that cigarette butts are the most littered item in America? Research shows that individuals who would never consider littering a piece of paper; an aluminum can; or other items may be littering cigarette butts. They may be surprised to be called litterers. About 95% of cigarette filters are composed of cellulose acetate, a form of plastic which does not quickly degrade and can persist in the environment.
A cigarette butt dropped to the ground may seem insignificant, but follow that butt as it's carried off by rain into storm drains and eventually to streams and rivers. Cigarette litter can also pose a hazard to animals and marine life when they mistake filters for food.
Litter in general is one of the most difficult problems to control in our city, especially on entry and exit ramps leading to and from neighborhoods and city hot spot destinations.
The litter accumulation is most disturbing after winter thaw. Food containers, cans, glass and plastic bottles, plastic and paper bags, gum, newspaper and cigarette butts line the grassy slopes and fence lines on our city's roadway ramps.
Increasing amounts of litter on a ramp entry into a neighborhood signals this as a potentially unsafe area where no one cares.