Survey on ashtrays: answers to the questions
Cigarette butts that end up on sidewalks and streets, it's a real plague! That is why the City of Brussels launched a playful awareness campaign. You will now find several colorful ashtrays at a number of locations in the centre or during some major events.
The principle is simple: offering smokers the opportunity to express their opinion by depositing their small but very polluting piece of waste in a box. The questions can be funny, related to the event, but also educational. For the 'informative' side, the City has opted to make smokers aware of the disastrous consequences of their pollution. Here are the answers to these first questions:
100 million or 200 million?
Explanation: the Internet has a significant impact on the environment. For example, two searches on the Google search engine are equivalent to the energy needed to boil water in a kettle. Knowing that there are almost 200 million searches per day in the world, that amounts to the use of 100 million kettles! A search on Google, from a PC, generates about 7 grams of carbon dioxide (for a kettle with hot water: 15 grams of CO2). Google itself is investing in research to reduce the amount of energy consumed by the IT industry, including as a member of the Climate Savers Computing Initiative.
In Finland or Northern Canada?
Explanation: this is a very controversial topic. Americans and Canadians see Santa Claus at the North Pole. But that is a vast territory... According to the Norwegians he lives in Drøbak, 50 km south of Oslo. For the Swedes he lives in Gesunda in the northwest of Stockholm and for the Danes he can be found on Greenland. In 1927, the Finns declared that Santa could only come from Lapland because he had to feed his reindeer properly. His presumed residence would be in Finland, in Rovaniemi (Lapland), in Santa Claus Village.
But fortunately, wherever it is, Santa Claus always responds to children's letters (thanks to the postal companies that run this service in different countries).
Cola or tea from Sri Lanka?
Explanation: while tea from Sri Lanka is exported from another continent, the impact on greenhouse gas emissions is bigger for cola. A can of coke 'weighs' 129 grams of CO2, from production to transport (Coca-Cola brand). Do not forget that for a liter of cola 2.5 liters of water is needed, and in some countries even more!
Black tea from Sri Lanka has an ecological footprint of 17 grams per cup. This takes into account the energy consumption from the tea producer to the consumer, who has to heat his water.
The Lapps or the Sami?
Both answers are possible. But Sami is better.
Explanation: Sami are the first inhabitants of Finland. They are also called Lapps, but they do not really like this name, which they find pejorative and which is not of Finnish origin (lapps means rags in Swedish). The land of their ancestors is called Sápmi and not Lapland.
500L or 50L?
Explanation: although a cigarette is smoked within about five minutes, it can take 12 years for a cigarette butt to completely disappear. Throwing away this small waste on the ground is therefore not an innocent gesture to the environment and public cleanliness. It is important to note that only one cigarette butt contaminates up to 500 liters of water, with the cigarette containing chemical and toxic substances. Knowing that 4,300 billion cigarette butts are thrown away each year (137,000 per second), the impact on the environment is enormous!
5 or 2 years?
Explanation: throwing waste in nature is not without consequences. A part will stay there long and even survive us. If a paper handkerchief needs three months to be broken down in nature, a chewing gum takes five years. A fruit peel: 3 to 6 months. A subway ticket: 1 year. A plastic bag: 450 years!
A dozen times or infinitely?
Explanation: glass has a not insignificant quality... It can be 100% recycled and infinitely! That is more than paper. It is therefore essential to deposit your glass bottles in glass containers. That ecological gesture saves a lot of energy.