12 million plus pounds of litter were picked up off of North Carolina roadways in 2005. The N&O has a story on it here:
Last year, prison inmates and state highway workers removed 10.2 million pounds of litter from state roadways, at a taxpayer cost of $16.3 million -- up from 2004.
Private cleanup efforts netted almost 2 million pounds more in 2005.
I participated in the Neuse River Clean-Up a couple of weeks ago and lifted a whole canoe full of litter out of a three mile stretch on the Neuse and was followed by five other canoes filled to the top as well. On my way back from the event, I saw a woman throw a cigarette butt out of her window, and I almost went ballistic. I was so pissed that I spent all of my time cleaning up trash and had to watch someone litter in plain sight.
As the DOT man says:
"If we smoke or drink something in our house, we don't throw the trash on the living room floor," said George Kapetanakis, 58, the transportation department's litter programs coordinator. "We need people to make a cultural change and say: 'Hey I don't have to throw this out of the car. I can hang onto it until I get home.' "