Trash to Treasure 中国人让香烟头变废为宝
By Matt McGrath, BBC science reporter
Backgound: 中国西安交通大学的一位博士生和合作研究人员称他们已经找到了让丢弃的香烟头变废为宝的新奇途径。 他们发现从烟头过滤嘴中提取的化学物能够保护钢管不被腐蚀。这项研究已经发表在美国的某化学学会期刊上，它有望让回收香烟头成为一件具有经济前景的事情。
On pavements, nature trails and especially on beaches, wherever you find people on this planet you inevitably find cigarette butts: around 4.5 trillion of these ugly remnants find their way into the environment every year. Capable of surviving up to fifteen years in the sea, butts contain chemicals that are fatally toxic to many forms of fish.
Now researchers in China say they have found a novel use for these chemicals that could make the recycling of cigarette butts financially worthwhile.
The scientists found that by immersing the butts in water they were able to extract nine different chemical compounds including nicotine. When these extracts were applied to a type of steel widely used in the oil industry they were found to be very effective in preventing corrosion even under harsh conditions. The replacement of rusting steel pipes is a major ongoing cost for oil producers around the world.
China itself has no shortage of cigarette butts for scientists to experiment with: one third of the world's cigarettes are consumed there.