Tobacco companies will from this week start contributing to Ireland's street cleaning bills under new government legislation.
The move is part of legislative changes made in compliance with a European Union directive which bans single-use plastic straws, cutlery and other disposable plastics.
But should tobacco companies pay the volunteers who pick up cigarette butts?
Harriet Donnelly, CEO of charity Flossie and the Beach Cleaners, says that paying them would encourage people to volunteer more and help reduce the pollution caused by cigarette butts.
She told Newstalk Breakfast that the move would be a "nice gesture".
"The thing is with regards to NGOs, charities with environmental causes, we're so underfunded and it would be a very nice gesture because cigarette butts are probably the biggest polluter that you see", she said.
"There's things that we see more visually."
"Obviously there's plastic bottles and all the obvious things everyone talks about, but cigarette butts break down over ten years... and they are extremely damaging to the planet, to the oceans and everything else."
Ms Donnelly explained that butts are much harder to clean up as they're small and filters are "pretty invisible".
"You'd have to be quite bored beach cleaning to find them", she said.
However, the Tobacco Free Institute of Ireland is concerned that companies will use new legislation to greenwash their products.
Greenwashing is a form of advertising or marketing spin in which green marketing is deceptively used to persuade the public that an organisation's products and policies are environmentally friendly.
The anti-smoking group's Director General, Professor Luke Clancy, has said that the way the new scheme is run is what's most important.
When similar legislation was introduced in France, "the industry turned it around and made it an opportunity for greenwashing".
"They got involved in it and set up NGOs to help with the collection of litter", he said.
Prof Clancy says they did this in an attempt to portray themselves "as the good guys".
According to Prof Clancy, they tried to put the responsibility of pollution on smokers rather than the companies selling cigarettes.
Listen back to the full conversation here.
Main image shows a young man smoking a cigarette. Picture by: RayArt Graphics / Alamy Stock Photo