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Keep Ibiza tidy campaign

Litter bug alert

A novel way to highlight a BIG litter problem

If you've been on one of the beaches in the San Jose area of Ibiza lately, you may have thought you'd stumbled across the land of the giants as the sands were littered with enormous cigarette butts, bottle tops, sunflower seeds and lolly sticks. No, you weren't on mind altering drugs, you'd seen San Jose council's novel way of drawing attention to the litter problem on its beaches this summer.

The council's environmental department, which controls the cleaning of the beaches, are trying to educate beach users to dispose of all the rubbish they bring with them in a manner that respects their surroundings and keeps the beach clean for other users. It's not rocket science, but even so a council expert was on hand at the 'exhibition' giving bathers information about where to put their rubbish.

With around five times more people than normal visiting the beaches in July, August and September, the problem becomes quite acute, and so, for maximum impact, the giant detritus was placed in highly visible areas at the entrance to the beach or between ther wooden catwalks. The council also chose the most popular beach rush hours – between 2 and 8 – at Playa d'en Bossa, Salinas, Cavallet, Cala Conta, Cala Bassa, Cala Tarida and Cala Vadella to make their point.

It's such a shame that the council should have to do this but unfortunately that's the way it is. A little research reveals that it isn't only the visual impact of rubbish that spoils our beaches for everyone, as these facts about one small cigarette butt reveal.

Butts are made from a petroleum derivative, are not biodegradeable and can take up to 15 years to decompose in the sand.

Each butt can pollute up to 25 litres of water and have unpredictable consequences for plants and animals in the sea and coastline.

Their small size and weight makes it difficult for mechanical cleaners to remove them which increases the cost of cleaning enormously.

Incredible, isn't it?

Please think carefully about how you dispose of your rubbish and have a look at this website for more information about cigarettes, please click here.

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