Postcard from... Paris
Wednesday 07 November 2012
Last week, a war was declared in Paris. The mayor has taken it upon his council to wipe out all cigarette butts that litter his city's streets.
Mayor Bertrand Delanoë is intent on enforcing a €68 (£54) fine on every man, woman or child lazy enough to overlook one of the 10,000 bin-top ashtrays he plans to install.
No smoker will be spared as every bin will be equipped with an ashtray. "We cannot reprimand people if we don't offer an alternative" Delanoë explained.
There is already a €35 (£28) fine in place for dropping cigarette butts, yet this has hardly been policed due to the lack of public ashtrays for smokers' – an issue which should be resolved by the installation of so many new bins.
Since the 2008 enactment of the smoking ban in public places, including bars, cafes, restaurants and nightclubs, the Parisian streets have become busied with smokers and strewn with the debris their habit entails – 315 tonnes of it being amassed annually.
Serge Orru, a former Director General of WWF, has estimated that 30 billion cigarette butts fall on French soil every year courtesy of 14 million French smokers. It is his belief that smokers should tell each other where to discard their butts, and Parisians' lack of desire to do so has exacerbated the problem.
It seems the nonchalant stereotype of the Parisian, puffing on a cigarette, will now have to demonstrate a bit more responsibility when it comes to the disposal of their habit's debris. Or risk the wrath of a gendarme and his stern gesture to the nearest "poubelle".
- 1 Heavy metal producer's corpse to be mutilated by models as per his dying wish
- 2 Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
- 3 Nineteen-year-old student left gifts for parents before taking her own life
- 4 Deliberately urinating before sex can increase risk of urinary tract infections
British Muslim leaders outraged after Eric Pickles says followers of Islam should 'prove their identity'
UK terror fears: My jihadist son returned from Syria mentally scarred – now he is being ignored
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
Billy Crystal: 'Stop shoving gay sex scenes in my face'
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
David Cameron says anyone criticising Eric Pickles' letter to Muslims 'really has a problem'
£15000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Fantastic opportunities are ava...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Compute Engineer is required to join a globa...
£25000 - £28000 per annum + 25 days holidays & pension: Ashdown Group: PHP Web...
£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Based in London, Manchester, Br...