Picnic Table Made of Butts at Mussel Rock!

TerraCycle, the world’s leader in the collection and repurposing of complex waste streams, has joined forces with the Pacific Beach Coalition to collect and recycle the world’s most littered item – cigarette butts. Pacific Beach Coalition has sent almost 1.3 million filters to Terracycle for recycling since we started the recycling initiative in late 2014. Today a TerraCycle recycled (wheelchair accessible) picnic table has just been installed by the Daly City Public Works department at Mussel Rock car park, one of our monthly cleanup sites.

The Pacific Beach Coalition installed approximately 50 butt collection stations along the beaches and coastal trails
for smokers. In addition to these stations, we incorporated 4 central collection stations for people to drop off their collected filters from street to beach cleanups in their neighborhoods, beaches, or shopping centers and we collect them at any of our 10 monthly cleanup events. We also promote a month long Butt Blitz event in the fall for a final push to pickup butts before the winter storms sweep them from our streets, into the storm drains and out to the ocean.

Once the cigarette butts are collected, Terracycle separates out the residual tobacco, paper, and ash for compost. The remaining filter, which is made of a white synthetic fiber called cellulose acetate, is thoroughly cleaned, melted, and made into hard plastic pellets that can be remolded to make new recycled products like the picnic table or park benches, fencing, decks, playground equipment and more.

Thank you to all our volunteers who have picked up these small toxic pieces of plastic over the years and for educating others to dispose of their butts properly. Every bit (or butt) counts to save our oceans and animals. On a nice day, Mussel Rock can make you feel like you are on top of the world and when the whales or dolphins swim by below, there is really nothing better. 

Article From the Tribune

We would like to thank the Tribune for featuring this exciting news: Recycling efforts pay off with bench

Now, in Pacifica, you can sit on someone else’s butt.

An innovative waste recycling company has joined forces with the Pacific Beach Coalition to collect and recycle the world’s most littered item — cigarette butts. On Monday, a picnic table made with those recycled cigarette ends was installed at Mussel Rock car park.

Every year, volunteers with the Pacifica-based Pacific Beach Coalition collect thousands of cigarette butts that have been discarded at the beach and elsewhere in the local environment. Recently, the organization shipped them to TerraCycle, which processes the filters into plastic pellets for use in a variety of recycled products. The remaining tobacco is composted.

Read more.