CIGNIFICANT CHANGE is dedicated to reducing ocean pollution with a specific focus on cigarette butts as the number one littered item in the world, and the disastrous effects they have on our oceans and marine life.

The campaign aims to raise public awareness of both the issue and remedy of ocean litter through meaningful and informative art installations, provide practical solutions at key locations for cigarette butt disposal, contribute to the waterway clean-up projects in South East Queensland, and stand up for environmental protection and the rights of Mother Earth. Add your voice to the movement by signing the petition for Gold Coast City Council to let us recycle cigarette butts.

Cigarette butts are the most littered item in the world.

Around the world, approximately 75% of cigarette butts are discarded into the environment each year, that’s over 4.5 trillion cigarettes weighing around 750000 tonnes in total.

In Australia, approximately 20 million cigarette butts are littered every day… that’s 7 billion butts (of the 24 billion cigarettes sold) each year in this country alone.  If laid end to end, the line of butts would circle the earth 3.6 times.

Most cigarette butts are not biodegradable. The filters are composed of cellulose acetate, a form of plastic, which will remain in the environment for as long as other forms of plastic. They also contain carcinogens, nicotine and other toxins.

A typical cigarette butt can take up to 10 years to decompose.

Littered cigarette butts pollute our environment, are toxic to our marine ecosystems, choke and poison land and sea animals, leach chemicals and toxins into the ground and waterways poisoning living organisms, impact the quality of our water, are fire hazards, are a risk to the health and safety of young children and pets, and cost the community time and money to clean up.

Over 90% of reports for littering from a vehicle is for cigarette butts.

Litter is an environmental crime.

The most common excuses for littering cigarette butts are not knowing that it’s litter, being too lazy, or a lack of available bins.



Bin your butts. And if there isn’t a bin nearby, keep the butt with you until you find one.

Share with others that cigarette butts are the number one littered item in the world, and that they contribute to the contamination and destruction of our environment and marine ecosystems, and that they are poisoning and choking land and sea animals. Suggest to others to bin their butt, or to hang on to it until they can find one.

In Queensland you can report people who throw cigarette butts out of car windows, for a fine of $252.

Jump on board a Clean-Up initiative in your area… or start one!

On the Gold Coast, contribute to making Cignificant Change by joining a Burleigh Beach Clean in 2018 on

  • 9 June 
  • 21 July
  • 1 September
  • 13 October
  • 24 November

Eliminating cigarette butts has become an environmental priority, no ifs no butts.