Keep America Beautiful has announced the availability of 2015 Cigarette Litter Prevention Program Grants to help communities combat the most commonly littered item in America.
Keep America Beautiful’s CLPP Grants provide a valuable incentive to combat the economic and quality-of-life impact of cigarette littering. The program has been expanded in 2015 to offer grant amounts totaling $275,000, with 15 grants of $10,000, 15 grants of $5,000, and 20 grants of $2,500.
Local governments, business improvement districts, downtown associations, parks and recreation areas, and other organizations dedicated to eradicating litter and beautifying communities are encouraged to apply.
The deadline for all applications is Friday, Feb. 6, 2015. All interested communities and organizations should complete the online application available via KAB’s website. (Click here for the CLPP Grants Application User Guide.) Grant winners will be announced by Feb. 27, 2015.
Communities implementing the CLPP during 2013 reported a 48 percent reduction of cigarette litter. In 2014, the program’s 12th year, there were 130 grant-supported implementations across the country in a variety of settings including downtowns, roadways, beaches, parks, marinas, colleges/universities, tourist locations, and at special event locations.
Over the past nine years, the CLPP has consistently cut cigarette butt litter by half based on local measurements taken in the first four months to six months after a program implementation. Survey results also demonstrated that as communities continue to monitor the program, those reductions are sustained or even increased over time. For example, more than 100 communities that launched programs in 2013 achieved an average reduction of 43 percent that year, and increased that reduction by an additional 34 percent when measured again in 2014.
“It’s essential to reduce cigarette litter to lessen the environmental harm this common type of litter places on our landscapes and waterways,” said Jennifer Jehn, president and CEO of Keep America Beautiful. “Our Cigarette Litter Prevention Program is making a significant difference in communities where the program is being implemented because of public education in tandem with access to receptacles.”
Tobacco products, consisting mainly of cigarette butts, are the most littered item in America, representing nearly 38 percent of all items littered, according to "Litter in America," KAB’s landmark 2009 study of litter and littering behavior.
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.
To address cigarette butt litter, KAB’s CLPP advocates that communities integrate four proven approaches:
• Encourage enforcement of litter laws, including cigarette litter;
• Raise awareness about the issue using public service messages;
• Place ash receptacles at transition points such as entrances to public buildings; and
• Distribute pocket or portable ashtrays to adult smokers.
The "Guide to Cigarette Litter Prevention" provides information about starting and maintaining a Cigarette Litter Prevention Program in your community, and can be found online at PreventCigaretteLitter.org. You can also view the new PSA on KAB’s YouTube channel.
The Cigarette Litter Prevention Program is supported by funding from Philip Morris USA, an Altria company; RAI Services Company; and the Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Company.
About Keep America Beautiful
Keep America Beautiful is the nation’s leading nonprofit that brings people together to build and sustain vibrant communities. With our national network of community-based affiliates, we work with millions of volunteers who take action in their communities to transform public spaces into beautiful places. Through our programs and public-private partnerships, we engage individuals to take greater responsibility for improving their community’s environment. For more information, visit kab.org, follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, or view us on YouTube.