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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2011 Week 04 Hansard (Thursday, 7 April 2011) . . Page.. 1647 ..

(1) What is the Government doing to address cigarette butt litter, particularly as it is often identified as the most common litter in the ACT.

(2) Has the Government taken specific measures to deal with litter hot spots that have arisen as a result of the new smoking bans in the ACT.

(3) How many new cigarette butt receptacles has the Government provided in the last two years, where were they constructed and how were the locations chosen.

(4) What plans does the Government have for new cigarette butt receptacles and how is it identifying the most appropriate locations.

Mr Stanhope: The answer to the member’s question is as follows:

(1) The ACT Government has a number of legislative, maintenance and education measures in place to reduce cigarette butt litter.

Under the Litter Act 2004 - on the spot fines of $60 can be issued for unlit or extinguished cigarettes or $200 for discarding a lit cigarette.

The Butt Free City education campaign was launched in 2005 to encourage smokers to responsibly dispose of their cigarette butts. In partnership with Butt Free Australia, the ACT Government ran the annual Butt Free City campaign in Canberra in June 2010 to reduce butt littering in central business districts. Educators from Territory and Municipal Services (TAMS) and Butt Free Australia toured the City, focusing on 'hotspots', approaching smokers about their butt littering behaviour and gaining pledges from smokers to facilitate a long term commitment to continually place their cigarette butts in a bin or a personal ash tray.

TAMS removes litter, including cigarette butts, when cleaning public places such as shopping centres, bus stops and interchanges.

(2) In April 2011, a partnership between the Department of Environment, Climate Change, Energy and Water (DECCEW) and TAMS’ ACT NOWaste and City Services Branches is funding an audit of the 68 bins in the City retail core area. The contents of the bins will be analysed on a weekday and a weekend and divided into all of the waste streams. Cigarette butts have been identified as a waste stream.

The audit also entails an analysis of the content of litter in the public realm within the Canberra Central Business District, i.e. City Walk and its connecting pedestrian corridors bounded by Bunda Street, East Row, Binara Street and London Circuit. The information gained from these audits will inform decisions and actions to address the management of litter, including cigarette butts.

TAMS’ City Rangers also approach building lessees, including Government departments, within the Canberra Central Business District (CBD) to ensure patrons and/or staff are appropriately disposing of their cigarette butts. Business owners are encouraged to provide butt bins for use by their patrons and/or staff.

(3) Nil. The approach taken by Government is to provide specially designed bin shrouds within high use public areas, such as shopping centres, which are suitable for the stubbing out of cigarettes prior to disposing of them in the bin. Litter bins are strategically located to maximise use by the public.

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