obacco plants use more nutrients than many other crops, degrading the soil. Probably the most impact of a cigarette on the environment is the production of them. The land used to grow the crops could be put to better use by planting more trees or food production. Vast quantities of pesticides, fertilizer and herbicides are used on tobacco crops. Some crops require over a dozen applications of pesticides during the three-month growing period. Cigarette butts also do a lot of damage. You might think they were made of cotton, but actually they are often a form of plastic. The polymer acetate filters are comprised of thousands of fibers that can take up to 15-25 years to decompose. The residue from tobacco in the butts also releases toxins into the environment. Trillions of butts are discarded each year.