l>Cigarette Litter --How Many?

How many discarded cigarette butts space there?

Note: The number on this net page reflect the variety of cigarettes consumed or produced. This go not typical that the discarded cigarette butts were every littered. No one knows the exact variety of cigarette butts which room littered each year. Clean Virginia Waterways urges you to use these facts and numbers correctly.

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1950 1,686 billion
1960 2,150 billion
1970 3,112 billion
1980 4,388 billion
1990 5,419 exchange rate
1991 5,351 exchange rate
1992 5,363 billion
1993 5,300 billion
1994 5,478 exchange rate
1995 5,599 exchange rate
1996 5,680 billion
1997 5,633 exchange rate
1998 5,581 billion
1999 5,554 billion
2000 5,609 billion
2001 5,643 exchange rate
2002 5,602 billion
2003 5,662 exchange rate
2004 5,530 billion (prelim.)

Sources for over table: U.S. Room of farming and U.S. Bureau of Census as quoted in "Vital signs 2005" published by WorldWatch Institute.

CIGARETTES consumed IN THE unified STATES The U.S. Department of farming (USDA) estimates that the following number of cigarettes to be consumed in the U.S.:

1993 - 485,000,000,000 1994 - 486,000,000,000 1995 - 487,000,000,000 1996 - 487,000,000,000 1997 - 480,000,000,000 1998 - 465,000,000,000 1999 - 435,000,000,000 2000 - 430,000,000,000 2001 - 425,000,000,000 2002 - 415,000,000,000 2003 - 400,000,000,000 2004 - 388,000,000,000 2005 - 376,000,000,0002006 - 372,000,000,000 2007 - 360,000,000,000 (Estimate by USDA)Source: Tobacco Outlook Report, financial Research Service, U.S. Dept. The Agriculture.

The USDA approximates that usage in the U.S. Is decreasing because of the cumulative results of higher prices, higher State taxes, restrictions on smoking, and also increased awareness of links between smoking and also disease. See web links for much more details. For more data on production, export, and also consumption that tobacco products, watch http://www.ers.usda.gov/briefing/tobacco/tables.htm


1. China 1.79 trillion cigarettes produced in 2004, largely (99%) spend in China
2. Joined States 499 billion cigarettes developed in 2004, around 24 percent exported
3. Russia 380 billion cigarettes created in 2004
4. Japan 216 exchange rate cigarettes developed in 2004

Note: The number on this web page reflect the number of cigarettes consumed or produced. This does not typical that the discarded cigarette butts were every littered. No one knows the exact variety of cigarette butts which space littered each year. Clean Virginia Waterways motivates you to usage these facts and also numbers correctly.

The people Health Organization approximates that 1,300,000,000 (1.3 billion) human being smoke in the world - that is one third of all people on earth over the period of 15. An ext than 80 percent the these world live in countries with short or middle earnings levels.


The 360 billion cigarettes acting in the United claims in 2007 equates to a full of 135,000,000 pounds that discarded butts in one year in the United says alone. The filters from 5.6 trillion cigarettes (approximate world production) would certainly weigh more than 2.1 billion pounds (see table below). This number does not encompass the load of the tobacco tho attached come the filter, or the packaging, matches, disposable lighters, and also other "collateral" waste that is generated by smoking.

The filter on one load of 20 cigarettes weigh 0.12 ounces (with no tobacco attached) and also displaces a volume the 10 mL. Through annual an international production of cigarettes in ~ 5.6 trillion, the potential weight and also volume of tobacco butts becomes enormous (Table below).

number of filters ounces/pounds milliliters/liters
20 (one pack) .12 oz 10 ml
10,000 (one year"s intake for one smoker) 3.75 lbs 5 liters
1,000,000 375 lbs 500 liters
100,000,000 37,500 lbs 50,000 liters
10,000,000,000 3,750,000 lbs 5,000,000 liters
360,000,000,000 (Estimated variety of cigarettes exhilaration in the us in 2007. Note: not all were littered!!) 135,000,000 lbs 180,000,000 liters
1,000,000,000,000 375,000,000 lbs 500,000,000 liters


(1998 people cigarette production)

2,103,000,000 lbs 2,804,000,000 liters

* The percent of cigarettes v filters varies, depending upon the country.

Similarly, tobacco butts take up a large volume the space. If one person smokes a pack-and-a fifty percent a day, he will consume an ext than 10,000 cigarettes in a year. This number of cigarette butts (filters only-not consisting of remnant tobacco) will certainly fill a volume of 5 liters. Global annual intake of cigarettes creates sufficient cigarette butt waste come fill much more than 2,800,000,000 liters (2,800,000 m3).

Cigarette target data native The ocean Conservancy"s International seaside Cleanup

So how many cigarette butts room finding their means into streams, rivers and seaside environments? The International coastal Cleanup, organized each year by The s Conservancy (formerly the center for marine Conservation) involves much more than 300,000 volunteer picking up debris from beaches, rivers and also streams about the world. Volunteers finish Marine Debris Data Cards describe the quantity and type of litter they choose up. Every year throughout the International coastal Cleanup, cigarette butts optimal the list together the many abundant item accumulated worldwide. Cigarette butt litter is additionally one that the peak sources the litter in Virginia.

Cigarette butts room the most common debris item collected during the s Conservancy"s International coastal Cleanup numbering:

1998 - 1,616,841 1999 - 1,052,373 2000 - 1,369,726 2001 - 1,527,837 (22.31% of all the debris gathered during the ICC) 2002 - 1,640,614 (cigarettes and also other smoking-related assets accounted for 30 percent the the debris) 2003 - 1,426,613 (cigarette filters, cigar tips, and also tobacco packaging accounted for 38% of U.S. Debris, and also 34% of global debris) 2004 - 1,268,177 (cigarette filters, cigar tips, and also tobacco packaging accounted for 29.6% of U.S. Debris, and 21.2% of worldwide debris) 2005 - 1,638,066 (cigarette filters, cigar tips, and also tobacco packaging accounted because that 30.4% of an international debris) 2006 - 1,892,060 (cigarette filters, cigar tips, and also tobacco packaging accounted for 33.4% of global debris) 2007 - 1,971,551 (cigarette filters, cigar tips, and also tobacco packaging accounted for 38% of worldwide debris)

Cigarette butts have actually topped the perform in every the ocean Conservancy"s International seaside Cleanups because they were added to the Data Cards as a different item in 1990. The number of cigarette butts gathered during the cleanup is a small fraction of what is really the end in the environment. The s Conservancy has fact sheets about the International coastal Cleanup accessible online.

Note: The number on this web page reflect the number of cigarettes consumed. This walk not mean that the discarded tobacco butts were every littered. No one knows the variety of cigarette butts which space littered each year. Clean Virginia Waterways motivates you to usage facts and numbers correctly.

Click here for newspaper articles around how communities are make the efforts to minimize cigarette litter.

Click right here for information about workplace smoking bans, and also how they influence cigarette litter in the environment.

Read all about cigarette butt litter!

Click below to review an write-up that was published in the respectable 2000 problem of the American Littoral society journal, The Underwater Naturalist. This article, by CVW"s executive Director catalent M. Register, consists of background data, such as the truth that 2.1 exchange rate pounds of cigarette filters to be discarded global in 1998, along with results of her research showing that leached chemicals from tobacco filters space deadly come the water flea Daphnia magna, a little crustacean at the lower finish of, however important come the aquatic food chain.

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