“The Butt Hike” initiative is a project by molecular biologist Andreas Noe, better known as The Trash Traveler. It aims to alert and raise awareness about the impacts of their habits at home and on the streets, particularly about the final destination of cigarette butts thrown on the ground – the ocean. Our actions and our cities affect the health of this important ecosystem.
For this campaign, The Trash Traveler team set the goal of collecting 1 million cigarette butts along the Portuguese coast over a 2-month period. This purpose was achieved and exceeded, making a total of 1.1 million cigarette butts with the support of a community of 600 people in 70 initiatives held between August and September 2021. Cigarette butts are the largest item of plastic waste found worldwide and are full of toxins. In Portugal, 1.1 million cigarette butts are generated as litter in 2.5 hours.
For the collected cigarette butts, The Trash Traveler aims to implement circular solutions and as such, the cigarette butts will be recycled with mushrooms and the end product can be used to build a small house for future awareness events. In the meantime, the cigarette butts (which literally form a mountain of trash) will travel to schools, universities, festivals, and other events to raise environmental awareness.
In the words of the team responsible for the butt walk, “A community raises its voice to care for the planet.“
Learn more at THE BUTT HIKE | The Trash Traveler (theplastichike.org)
Butts Collection | SOMAR
Description: The association SOMAR was co-host of the cleaning action that took place in the city of Lagos. During 1.5 to 2 hours, in the morning, about 7000 cigarette butts were collected in Dona Ana beach and adjacent area. The initiative was open to the entire community, and 26 participants took part.
Location: Dona Ana Beach and adjacent area, Lagos
Date: September 23, 2021
Time: 10h00 – 12h00
Target Audience: General Public (open event)
Pickup Point | Lagos
- Description: The Trash Traveler also challenged cities to be cigarette butt collection points, in which SOMAR was involved in the implementation of this initiative in the city of Lagos – with the support of the Lagos City Municipality (which provided the receptacle) and Marina de Lagos (which provided a place of public access). Subsequently, the butts deposited at this point were delivered directly to Andreas, which were also counted towards the result of 1.1 million butts.
Place: Marina de Lagos, next to the reception
Date: October 11 to 15