Keep America Beautiful Presents 2020 Cigarette Litter Prevention Program Grant to Monroe County Municipal Waste Management Authority
National Nonprofit Provides Grant Funding, Resources to Help Monroe County Address Cigarette Litter
Monroe County, Pennsylvania June 16, 2020– Keep America Beautiful®, the nation’s largest community improvement nonprofit organization, today announced it has awarded a $20,000, 2020 Cigarette Litter Prevention Program (CLPP) grant to The Waste Authority to address cigarette litter in Monroe County, PA.
The grant will help us encourage better habits of pedestrians and tourists in the downtown areas of the Poconos. A lot of people do not see cigarette butts as litter or as harmful as litter when that is not the case. Instead of flicking it into the street, dispose of it properly just like any other item that can be recycled. At least two of our prominent downtown locations are near a stream to which we will raise awareness of the cigarette butt litter finding its way into our waterways.
“We are very excited to have this opportunity to address the biggest litter issue we as a community face today!” said James Lambert, Executive Director, Monroe County Municipal Waste Authority.
Keep America Beautiful provided individual merit-based grants, totaling more than $500,000, to 47 organizations throughout the country, including The Waste Authority. Grants were presented to Keep America Beautiful affiliates, local governments, business improvement districts, downtown associations, parks and recreation commissions, and other organizations dedicated to eradicating litter and beautifying their communities. Communities implementing the CLPP in 2019 reported an average 51 percent reduction of cigarette litter.
As part of the 2020 grant program, Keep America Beautiful is focusing on three primary types of cigarette littering interventions. Applicants will have the opportunity to focus on cigarette litter reduction through public messaging, infrastructure placement, or a combination of both.
Cigarette butts are the last acceptable form of litter because of the innate habit of flicking the butt. This can be mitigated with the educational use of the portable ash trays that will be distributed.
“The Cigarette Litter Prevention Program grants empower communities to help mitigate the economic, environmental, and quality-of-life impact of cigarette littering,” said Jerred Jones, program director for the CLPP. “Access to ash receptacles and the dissemination of public education are useful tools to help reduce the most commonly littered item in our litter stream.”
The CLPP, created by Keep America Beautiful in 2002, is the nation’s largest program aimed at eliminating cigarette butt and cigar tip litter. Since its inception, the program has been successfully implemented in more than 1,800 urban, suburban, and rural communities nationwide. Over the past decade, participating communities have consistently cut cigarette butt litter by 50 percent based on local measurements taken in the first four months to six months after program implementation.
Research has shown that even self-reported “non-litterers” often don’t consider tossing cigarette butts on the ground to be “littering.” Keep America Beautiful has found that cigarette butt litter occurs most often at transition points—areas where a person must stop smoking before proceeding into another area. These include bus stops, entrances to stores and public buildings, and the sidewalk areas outside of bars and restaurants, among others.
The Cigarette Litter Prevention Program is supported by funding from Philip Morris USA; RAI Services Company; and the Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Company.
County Municipal Waste Management Authority
The Monroe County Municipal Waste Management Authority is responsible for implementing the Municipal Waste Planning, Recycling and Waste Reduction Act, known as Act 101 for the County of Monroe. In addition to the planning responsibilities the Waste Authority operates a commercial recycling transfer station along with various public recycling programs. The Waste Authority manages several award-winning programs such as a county-wide electronic waste recycling program, litter collection programs, and an enforcement program to ensure the proper handling of municipal waste and the prosecution of illegal dumping. The Waste Authority also supports residents, businesses, and its county municipalities in implementing educational programs, informational updates for recycling, and waste disposal issues.
About Keep America Beautiful
Keep America Beautiful, the nation’s leading community improvement nonprofit organization, inspires and educates people to take action every day to improve and beautify their community environment. Established in 1953, Keep America Beautiful strives to End Littering, Improve Recycling, and Beautify America’s Communities. We believe everyone has a right to live in a clean, green, and beautiful community, and shares a responsibility to contribute to that vision. The organization is driven by the work and passion of more than 650 Keep America Beautiful affiliates, millions of volunteers, and the collaborative support of corporate partners, social and civic service organizations, academia, municipalities, elected officials, and individuals. Join us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube. Donate and take action at kab.org.