Paris battles 350 tons of cigarette butts with $76 fine

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

PARIS (AP) — The city of Paris, littered with 350 tons of cigarette butts each year, is striking back at smokers with a new 68-euro ($76) fine.

Starting Thursday, anyone caught flicking their butt onto the sidewalk should be ticketed. City hall is calling on all businesses to help enforce the rule — "to amplify the fight against this daily incivility," and authorities have installed 30,000 new garbage bins this year with built-in ashtrays.

Butts not only cause "visual pollution," city hall said in a statement, but also contain toxic products that could spread into soil and water.

Smoking has been banned in French public buildings, restaurants and bars since 2008, but nearly 30 percent of French people still smoke regularly.