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SUBIC BAY METROPOLITAN AUTHORITY
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SBMA’s Heaviest Butt Campaign Goes Viral
Apr 07, 2018

Subic Bay. SBMA Ecology Center’s Heaviest Butt Campaign has gone viral in just 48 hours since it was posted online on Thursday, April 5, 2018. It garnered 6 million people reached, 45.6 thousand shares, 30.2 thousand likes and 19.2 thousand comments and questions.

People took interest when they read that SBMA is buying dry cigarette butts for 300 pesos per kilo. Most comments expressed surprise, “Is this true?” Some are curious “What will you do with the cigarette butts that you are buying?” Meant to be a local campaign, it has caught nationwide and even international attention. People as far as Metro Manila, Laguna, La Union, Baguio, Cagayan De Oro and as far as Davao are asking where and how do they send their cigarette butts.

SBMA Chairman and Administrator, Atty. Wilma T. Eisma said “We are very happy that our campaign has gone viral and is catching the attention of a lot of people. We are hopeful that the study in which these cigarette butts will be used on, would turn out positive as well.”

The Heaviest Butt Campaign was first conceptualized in response to the observation that cigarette butt is one of the top three litters collected during the yearly International Coastal Cleanup in Subic Bay. Statistics show that there are about 4.5 trillion butts littered worldwide every year.

Cigarette butts cannot be recycled because of the smell and the toxins they contain such as lead, arsenic, and cadmium. Some data say it takes 5 years for cigarette butts to decompose, still some say it takes 10 years. In the meantime, they contaminate our soil and our waters.

SBMA Ecology Center has partnered with a local company which has designed their own machine for litter or garbage recycling and upcycling. The cigarette butts collected through the Heaviest Butt campaign shall be given to this company as materials for testing and study to see if it is possible to remove the smell and the toxins so that these butts can be upcycled into bricks or hollow blocks. Ecology Center is collecting 20-60 kilograms of cigarette butts for the said study.

This campaign is part of SBMA’s bigger program dubbed as War on Waste. SBMA is also launching the Refuse Single Use, which is a campaign against the use of disposable plastics or one time use plastics, and Straw Sucks which is a campaign against using plastic straws and promoting the use of alternative materials such as bamboo or metal straws, or not to use straws at all.

Eisma says “we hope that with these campaigns, there will eventually be behavioral change among its stakeholders in order to promote environmental responsibility. It aims to strengthen partnership and collaboration with the local community in keeping a clean and healthy Subic Bay Freeport Zone as the place of choice to live, work, and play.”


SBMA ground maintenance worker Mary Ann “Nanay Diding” Dela Cruz (right) shows the money she received from SBMA Ecology Center Social Development Officer Patrick Escusa as payment for the cigarette butts she submitted to the SBMA’s “Heaviest Butt Campaign.” The project encourages everyone to collect used cigarette butts and sell it to the SBMA Ecology Center for P300 a kilo to be used in an up-cycling experiment that would use the toxic butts as components of cement bricks.

SBMA ground maintenance worker Mary Ann “Nanay Diding” Dela Cruz (right) shows the money she received from SBMA Ecology Center Social Development Officer Patrick Escusa as payment for the cigarette butts she submitted to the SBMA’s “Heaviest Butt Campaign.” The project encourages everyone to collect used cigarette butts and sell it to the SBMA Ecology Center for P300 a kilo to be used in an up-cycling experiment that would use the toxic butts as components of cement bricks.


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