No butts: Outer Balboa neighborhood cleanup on Saturday targeting cigarette litter

An ashcan like the one Surfrider provides for proper cigarette butt disposal

This Saturday, the Balboa Village Merchants Association is hosting a neighborhood cleanup along Balboa Street from 32nd through 38th Ave.

The event, titled “Balboa Village Cigarette Butt Cleanup“, targets the littering of cigarette butts along the corridor.

To participate in Saturday’s Balboa Village Cigarette Butt Cleanup, meet at the Richmond District Neighborhood Center (741 30th Avenue) at 10:30am. All cleanup materials and supplies will be provided.

In addition to cleaning up butts, the group is also considering the installation of ashcans along the streets that encourage smokers to dispose of their cigarettes properly.

Surfrider, a local environmental group, provides the ashcans as part of their Hold on to Your Butt campaign. The campaign allows businesses and organizations to sponsor ashcans, which are them personalized for the community before they’re installed for use.

According to Surfrider, an estimated 4.5 trillion cigarette butts are littered every year. The filters within the cigarette butt are a nasty lot, and can leach nicotine, arsenic, formaldehyde, and heavy metals like lead and cadmium into water and soil, threatening water quality, marine and terrestrial life, and seafood safety.

Surfrider also encourages recycling of the collected butts from ashcans through the TerraCycle program, offering organizations the chance to accrue LEED points and make donations to the charitable foundation of their choice.

Sarah B.


  1. Love it . . . butt will it work? This needs to happen on Clement Street–especially my corner, 10th and clement in front of the empty storefront ( former 711) where people seem to think that it’s a smoker friendly spot. It isn’t. I’m all for boycotting business’s whose employees need to constantly take smoke breaks . .. some new Indian restaurant comes to mind.

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