Cigarettes and the Environment

by Malena Buker
Most people know that smoking pollutes the air and the lungs. However, the negative effects of cigarette smoking do not end at the ash tray. Two hundred and eighty billion cigarettes are purchased each year, and most of these cigarettes end up as litter on highways, parks, and beaches. Here, toxic chemicals in the cigarettes continue to harm the surrounding environment even after the cigarettes are extinguished. They also contaminate clean water, which every living thing needs. Furthermore, since cigarettes are mostly made of plastic and can only be biodegradable under ideal circumstances, they constitute a serious and long- lasting threat to the environment.
Not only does it affect the health of the environment, but smoking cigarettes also affects our wallets! Cities, towns, and municipalities must pay to clean up the litter caused by smokers. For big cities, cost of cleanup efforts can reach up to $10 million per year.
In short,  smoking cigarettes harms your body, as well as the people and the elements of the natural world around you. The toxins in cigarettes harm wildlife and contaminate water, and they cost more to clean from the environment than they do to smoke.
Think before you light up.

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