A CIGARETTE butt audit has uncovered littering hot spots on the main street of Port Douglas.
More than 2,200 cigarette butts were found at high profile areas on Macrossan St, between Grant and Wharf Streets, during a Douglas Shire Council litter count completed earlier this year.
Regular sitting locations in the middle of the street emerged popular butt flicking spots, with one tree surrounded by 277 butts.
Mayor Julia Leu said cigarette rubbish was unsightly, environmental vandalism and costly to ratepayers.
“Council has a zero tolerance attitude towards littering and we want smokers to think about their butts before throwing their cigarettes away,” she said.
“This could mean carrying a personal ashtray, which could be used from an old mint tin, and putting it into your pocket until you find a bin.”
Cigarette butt map HERE
Cigarette filters are made of plastic and cause environmental damage when swallowed by wildlife such as fish, birds and turtles.
Filters are also known to block drains.
“People who would never litter a coffee cup or food packet don’t realise the damage cigarette butts can cause,” Mayor Leu said.
“We have a pristine and beautiful environment in Far North Queensland that does not need to be tarred by the laziness and selfishness of some smokers.”
Plastic Free Douglas and Tangaroa Blue are spearheading the litter reduction campaign alongside Council.
Council will put anti-littering stickers on mint tins, which will be upcycled and handed back to smokers to use as a personal ashtray.
“We are urging residents to hand in their mint tins to various locations across our Shire to help stop this littering,” Mayor Leu said.
Tins will be collected at Douglas Shire Mossman Office, Mossman Library, Wildlife Habitat Port Douglas, Bendigo Bank Port Douglas, Wavelength Reef Cruises at Port Douglas Marina and Douglas Shire Office at the Community Hub on Mowbray Street until the end of February.
Smokers are urged to complete a survey HERE