An audit of litter on Edmonton's streets found nearly 10 per cent less waste than a year ago.

Capital City Clean Up’s 2102 Litter Audit revealed a 9.4% reduction in litter on city streets from last year that continues a downward trend from three years ago.

"Changing a behaviour like littering can take a few years," said Mayor Stephen Mandel, in a press release.

The audit found an average of 15.7 pieces of large litter per site, down from 17.3 pieces in 2011 and 25 pieces from the original audit in 2007.

Tobacco packaging continues to be the most common form of large litter, but the numbers are down from last year’s count.

Small litter counts remain low overall on city streets but cigarette butts remain the highest form of small litter, with the number actually rising from 613 in 2011 to 788 in 2012.

Consultant MGM Management conducted the audit, the fifth since 2007, by examining the same 123 sites throughout the city that were audited in previous years.

Each site is analyzed and the collected litter is sorted into large litter (over 25 square centimetres) such as candy bar wrappers, tobacco packaging and cardboard or small litter (less than 25 square centimetres) such as cigarette butts, small paper, chewing gum and other items.