The city installed nearly 200 ashtrays like this one along Jasper and Whyte Avenues to keep cigarette butts off sidewalks. ((CBC) )

There is less litter on Edmonton streets, according to a 2010 litter audit done by the city.

The audit found 29 per cent less garbage on city streets than in 2009.

The biggest drop was in cigarette butts, though butts and cigarette packaging remain the biggest problem.

"Cigarette litter itself is down, down by almost half from 2009, which is great," said Don Belanger, program manager of Capital City Clean Up.

"But you know, looking at it, the discarding of cigarette packages, foil wraps, etc. is a major problem."

The city credits the drop to city anti-littering programs and public education campaigns.

Belanger said his group is working on programs to deal with the cigarette packaging problem that can be brought in next year.

The audit did show litter rates in Edmonton are lower than Toronto, Florida and San Francisco – other cities that held litter audits.

The audit was done by a consultant which has been doing litter audits in North America since 2002. 

The consultant randomly selected 123 sites throughout the city. Each was analyzed and the amount of litter sorted into categories.