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San Diegans Urged To Throw Their Butts Away

— The local chapter of the Surfrider Foundation is holding a Cigarette Butt Awareness Day tomorrow. Activists will be at three busy intersections in beach communities to urge people to throw their butts away.

Cigarette butts are called the single most littered item in the United States. The problem has gotten even worse since many communities imposed indoor smoking bans.

San Diego bans smoking in city parks and on beaches, but discarded cigarette butts are still an issue.

Ken David, who is with the Surfrider Foundation, said butts aren't only a litter problem; they're also an environmental concern.

"Because you have birds and fish that mistake them for food," David said. "Also they are not made of cotton, they actually include plastics, so they never totally breakdown."

A recent study from San Diego State suggests cigarette butts should be classified as toxic hazardous waste.

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