Tenants Need a Place to Put Their Butts: New Program Offers Property Managers the Perfect Solution

November 20, 2020
Posted in News
November 20, 2020 Seventy1 Environmental


With the amount of water and debris that enters the storm drain system, it’s inevitable that filtration inserts installed on curb and grate inlets will need repair or replacement from time to time. There is one cause of damage, however, that is easily preventable and could potentially save property managers a lot of time and money.

Again and again, we are seeing that people are a leading cause of damage to filtration inserts. More specifically, people and their cigarettes. Inserts installed on storm drains located in or near designated smoking areas are frequently destroyed by still-burning cigarettes being deposited into the storm drain. The mesh lining of the inserts is a critical component of the filtration system, as it captures trash and debris while also housing the media pouches that filter stormwater. When a burning cigarette butt is tossed into the storm drain, it burns holes into that fabric. Over time, the burn holes accumulate until what is left is a filtration system that is not functioning as it should.

The consequence of an improperly-functioning filtration device is two-fold: pollution can easily enter the storm drain system, which flows directly to our waterways untreated, and the insert is no longer complying with municipal requirements, which means replacement is necessary.


The stormwater system carries rainwater off of streets and parking lots and out into streams, rivers and the ocean in order to prevent flooding. Unfortunately, litter is picked up by stormwater and flows into these waterways as well. That includes cigarette butts, which do not biodegrade and contain chemicals hazardous to wildlife and people. They are the most commonly found item during beach cleanups. In fact, volunteers collected 168 cigarette butts during our beach cleanup on May 3rd.

We believe that if people understood where stormwater goes after it enters the storm drain system, they might think twice before they flick their cigarette butts into the drain. This is why we have put together Cigarette Collect, a receptacle installation and service program for property managers.

CigaretteCollect : SLEEK | DISCREET | GREEN

Seventy1 Environmental now installs and services sleek cigarette receptacles affixed with an informational decal about stormwater and its role in water quality. Our goal is to get cigarette butts off the ground, away from storm drains and out of our waterways. We also hope to save our clients the hassle and cost of replacing filtration inserts.

The aluminum, powder-coated receptacles come in two styles: free-standing and wall-mounted. Cigarette-removal service occurs at the same time as the property’s regular stormwater system maintenance service.

Get started with CigaretteCollect today!

Contact Jayme Welch for more information.