Cigarette butts make up 78 percent of litter in NZ

Long Lunch 05/04/2018
Photo: Stock

It seems our ‘Tidy Kiwi’ attitude is a thing of the past if new research on our littering habits is to be believed.

Keep New Zealand Beautiful (KNZB) volunteers collected enough rubbish to fill 120 rugby fields from just one week-long clean up.

According to new research out this week, cigarette butts make up 78 percent of all litter in New Zealand.

Off the back of this research, KNZB is launching an anti-litter campaign – its first since the 90s, to tackle our rubbish problem.

Spokesperson Kath Doubleday told Wendyl Nissen the shameful litter habits of Kiwis is “worrying”.

“Essentially there is a generational gap between people from the 70s, 80s and 90s, remembering the wonderful messages of do the right thing and be a tidy Kiwi,” she said.

Unfortunately, New Zealanders are becoming a bit complacent.

“They’re starting to drop their litter on the ground, and not pick up after themselves,” she added. “Which is quite a worry.”

The national litter behaviour research, commissioned by KNZB, found 93 percent of New Zealanders think it is important for New Zealand to maintain its clean, green image.

Funding for the Mama Nature campaign has been granted by the Ministry for the Environment.

Listen to the full interview with Kath Doubleday above.

The Long Lunch with Wendyl Nissen, 12pm - 3pm on RadioLIVE and streaming live to the rova app on Android and iPhone.