Contributed/ The Northern View Jonathan Cohen, Anna McRobbie, Jessica Newman, Lionel Conant, Rose Marie Conant and Sarah Dantzer display some of more than 5,000 cigarette butts they cleaned up on Saturday.

Rupert collects more than 5,000 cigarette butts

A handful of Prince Rupert citizens collected more than 5,000 cigarette butts on Saturday.

More than 5,000 cigarette butts were cleaned up in Prince Rupert on Saturday in the city’s first Butt Blitz.

The Butt Blitz initiative is a Canada-wide campaign to rid communities of stray cigarette butts on the streets. Sarah Dantzer and Anna McRobbie led the charge to bring the blitz to Prince Rupert on the weekend. Dantzer and McRobbie were joined by Jonathan Cohen, Jessica Newman, Lionel Conant and Rose Marie Conant.

A grand total of 5,245 were cleaned up. The most butts were found at Broadwater, Rona, the truck dock, parking lots, gutters, Wheelhouse and the Yacht Club parking lot, which was most concerning to Dantzer.

“This makes me wonder how many fishermen are throwing their butts right into the ocean,” she said.

Dantzer is asking charter fishermen to embrace pocket ashtrays for their employees and for tourists. They can be purchased from Prince Rupert Special Events Society. She said Coastal Propane and Breakers Pub both had cigarette receptacles and it made a difference in the amount of littered butts in their areas.

“I’m interested in working with businesses to collect and send in cigarette butts accumulated for recycling,” Dantzer said, adding she can be reached at sarahdantzer89@gmail.com.

Butt Blitz started in 2014 after A Greener Future executive director and founder Rochelle Archibald picked up 250 pieces of litter in her grandmother’s honour. Since then, she has turned the campaign into a nationwide initiative. The goal for communities around Canada was to collect 200,000 litter pieces on Saturday. That mark was shattered, as 380,524 pieces of litter were collected.

More information can be found at agreenerfuture.ca.

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