Cigarettes take top spot in Latvia's beach trash survey

On September 16, an audit of coastal waste was conducted by the association Zero Waste Latvija on Daugavgrīva beach, where the waste collected during the hour was analyzed in order to understand what pollutes the beach the most, Latvian Television reported on September 18.

The audit concluded that the absolute leader of waste is the Winston cigarette butts manufactured by Imperial Brands, said Elīna Kolāte, the organizer of the audit.

This year the polluter tops have changed – if in the past the leaders were beverage manufacturers, this time the cigarette manufacturers triumphed. Overall, more than half of the waste units collected were cigarette butts. 

The top is as follows: 

  • Imperial Brand (Winston cigarettes)
  • Philip Morris International (Marlborough, L & M, Chesterfield, Parliament brands)
  • Reynolds American (Camel, Caines)
  • Roshen candy/AB InBev (Corona Extra beer)

The audit also concluded that bottles were almost completely absent from the beach with the introduction of the deposit system, but their caps remained.

Although the sale of plastic cotton swabs was prohibited in Latvia in 2021, they can still be found in nature, the audit concluded. Members of the association conceded, most likely people still continue to use the previously purchased sticks and then throw them away in the toilet bowl. They go further into wastewater treatment plants, where not everything is caught.

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