Clear The Air News Tobacco Blog Rotating Header Image

April 10th, 2013:

Smoking recommendation clears state House panel

6 hours ago • BY HANNAH DOUGLAS, JG-TC Springfield Bureau

SPRINGFIELD — A resolution recommending that Illinois motorists not smoke with children in the car cleared a House panel unanimously Tuesday.

State Rep. Marcus Evans, Jr., D- Chicago, sponsored the measure that seeks to address the dangers of secondhand smoke. Evans also introduced a proposal that would ban drivers from smoking with children under 13 in the car, but said it will not move this session.

“I want a discussion for action,” Evans said. “I want people to stop smoking around their children and lead healthier lives.”

Evans said there wasn’t official opposition to that ban, but there might have been had the measure advanced.

State Rep. Mike Bost, R- Murphysboro, was among those who said he’d have voted against the proposed law if it had come up for a vote.

Although it is good to advise parents and other drivers on this issue, state oversight on the issue isn’t necessary, Bost said.

“We can let parents be parents … I don’t think we need it,” Bost said.

However, Evans said that if people would stop smoking with children in the car, he wouldn’t need to introduce a measure that bans the behavior.

The resolution next moves to the full House.

And although the resolution is only a recommendation, currently five states — Arkansas, California, Louisiana, Maine, and Utah — ban smoking in vehicles with children at various ages, according to Global Advisors on Smokefree Policy, a New Jersey based non-profit organization.

A similar measure banning smoking in vehicles with children ages 8 and under was introduced in 2010, but it did not clear the House.

The legislation is House Resolution 146 and House Bill 2939.

Contact Douglas at or 217-528-1079.

<img src=”” /> <div style=”display:none;”> <img src=”” border=”0″ height=”1″ width=”1″ alt=”Quantcast”/> </div>

ASH Daily News for 10 April 2013


UK rises up Unicef child well-being ranking

The well-being of British children has improved in a number of areas in recent years but they still lag behind many of their European neighbours, a Unicef report says.

Action on smoking, drinking and obesity has seen success but concerns remain about further education and unemployment.
See also:
– British children facing bleaker future under coalition, says Unicef, The Guardian
The State of the World’s Children 2011, Unicef (pdf)

Source: BBC News – 10 April 2013

ASH Scotland says tobacco advertising drive shows industry ‘up to its same old tricks’

Health campaigners at Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) Scotland have responded to reports of a new advertising drive by Japan Tobacco International opposing the Scottish Government’s support for plain, standardised packaging for tobacco products.
Source: Talking Retail – 09 April 2013

Coventry: Council swoop on city shisha bars

A raid on Coventry shisha bars has resulted in the seizure of hundreds of packs of illegal tobacco, the closure of a number of bars for breaching the smokefree laws and other bars switching to selling tobacco free products.
Source: Coventry Telegraph – 09 April 2013

Gloucestershire: Shopkeeper jailed for selling illegal tobacco

A Stroud shopkeeper has been jailed for 18 weeks after pleading guilty for selling illegal tobacco. This follows a previous 12-week sentence suspended for 18 months and 120 hours of unpaid work.
Source: This is Gloucestershire – 09 April 2013

USA: Smoking in youth-rated movies doubles

Smoking scenes in youth-rated movies doubled in number between 2010 and 2012, and have returned to the same level as a decade ago, according to a new report.

The researchers said the increase — which comes just a year after the U.S. Surgeon General warned that watching movies with smoking scenes causes youngsters to start smoking — is a setback for national youth tobacco prevention goals.

The report found that half of youth-rated movies in 2012 delivered an estimated 14.8 billion “tobacco impressions” to audiences, a 169 percent increase from the historic low in 2010.

The study was funded by Legacy, a nonprofit, antismoking foundation based in Washington, D.C.

Source: Health – 09 April 2013

JTI celebrates Camel centenary

Celebratory events will commence this month with events at duty-free locations in airports across Latin America. JTI has commissioned 20 international artists, designers, painters, musicians and DJs to create images and soundtracks for over 100 original artworks for the “Remix” celebrations.
Source: DFNI Online – 09 April 2013

Comparing tobacco fight to the Opium Wars – The Japan Times

NEW YORK – To know if tobacco is the equivalent of the opium wars in China, it is useful to briefly review history. When Christopher Columbus explored the New World in 1492, he found the natives smoking a native plant, tobacco, which they did both for medicinal and ceremonial purposes. He was the first to introduce it in Europe.

From 1617 to 1793, tobacco was the most widely used and valuable staple export from the English American mainland colonies and the United States

Columbus could have never imagined that, shortly after its introduction in Europe, tobacco would become one of the main threats to health in several Latin American and Asian countries, just as opium would plague China in the 19th century.

Tobacco, one of the most addictive substances in the world, was introduced to China via Japan or the Philippines in the 1600s. In 1643, Fang Yizhi, a Chinese scholar, was one of the first to warn of the dangers of exposure to tobacco. He wrote that smoking tobacco for too long would “blacken the lungs” and lead to death. Chongzhen, the Chinese emperor at the time, outlawed growing tobacco and smoking its leaves.

In 1858, the Treaty of Tianjin (Tientsin) which ended the first part of the Second Opium War (1856-1860) not only legalized the import of opium but allowed cigarettes to be imported to China duty-free. By 1900, foreign companies thoroughly permeated China.

In 1929, Fritz Lickint, a German scientist from Dresden, published the first statistical evidence linking tobacco use and lung cancer, a finding that was confirmed in 1950 in an article in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Only in 1999 did the Phillip Morris tobacco company acknowledge that “there is an overwhelming medical and scientific consensus that cigarette smoking causes lung cancer, heart disease, emphysema and other serious diseases in smokers.”

Today, while its use has diminished considerably in industrialized countries, it is having a devastating effect on the health of the Chinese population.

As Dr. Bernard Lown, a famous cardiologist, already indicated in 2007, “the struggle against tobacco is not being won, it is being relocated.” He also denounced that cigarettes are becoming more addictive and more lethal because of the higher tar and nicotine content.

The state-owned China National Tobacco Corporation (CNTC), trading as China Tobacco and founded in 1982, accounts for roughly 30 percent of the world’s total production of cigarettes, and is the largest manufacturer of tobacco products. China National Tobacco Corporation falls under the jurisdiction of the State Tobacco Monopoly Administration (STMA).

The STMA has been under constant pressure from the World Trade Organization to loosen its monopoly. Since 2001, increased access has been granted to foreign companies.

Today, although CNTC dominates China’s market, foreign brands can still be found in large cities in China. In 2007, it was estimated that CNTC had 32 percent of the world tobacco market.

Tobacco smoking still continues to place a heavy toll on the Chinese people’s health. It is estimated that every day roughly 2,000 Chinese die because of smoking. China has now approximately 360 million smokers — a number greater than the U.S. population — who consume 37 percent of the world’s cigarettes. In addition, almost 800 million people suffer the consequences of second-hand smoke.

According to the Chinese Academy of Preventive Medicine, smoking will be responsible for approximately 3.2 million deaths annually by 2030.

Tobacco is also costly to the country’s economy. Although tobacco companies paid 864.9 billion yuan in taxes in 2012, when the health care costs of the people made sick by tobacco are combined with lost productivity, the total cost is probably much higher. The increased health costs as a result of smoking are part of the tragic legacy of tobacco.

Paradoxically, while the U.S. government has been extremely successful in discouraging smoking at home, its pressure on Japan, Taiwan, South Korea and Thailand to break their domestic tobacco monopolies has resulted in their markets being flooded with American cigarettes. This prompted former U.S. Surgeon General Dr. C. Everett Koop to state that “people will look on this era of the health of the world, as imperialistic as anything since the British Empire — but worse.”

By issuance of the China Tobacco Control Plan (2012-2015), the Chinese government has indicated its intention to lower the negative impact of smoking. The plan, however, has been widely criticized for its lack of concrete proposals.

To effectively combat smoking, it is necessary to mobilize communities, educate the people about the health risks and high costs of smoking, impose punitive fines in class action suits and increase tax on cigarettes.

Unless these measures are implemented, tobacco will end up causing more damage to the Chinese people than the Opium Wars did in the 19th century.

Cesar Chelala, M.D. and Ph.D., is an international public health consultant and the author of “Tobacco or Health,” a publication of the Pan American Health Organization.

Council considers withdrawing ‘awful’ £5m tobacco investments

10:20am Wednesday 10th April 2013

By Lauren May

The senior cabinet member for health has spoken out against a controversial £5m investment in the tobacco industry by Merton Council.

Last week the Wimbledon Guardian revealed the council has more than £5m invested in British American Tobacco, makers of Lucky Strike and Benson and Hedges cigarettes, and Imperial Tobacco, who make Lambert and Butler cigarettes.

This is despite Merton now planning to spend £163,000 on NHS stop smoking services this year.

But now, Councillor Linda Kirby, cabinet member for adult social health, has called for the council to look into rearranging its investment “triple quick”.

She said: “We don’t want to be investing in tobacco companies – I think it is awful.

“It’s happening at authorities up and down the country.

“Suddenly they will realise what’s going on and they will want to change it.”

The council has recently taken over a new public health role as part of the NHS shake-up making it directly responsible for improving people’s welfare by promoting healthy living, including running anti-smoking campaigns.

This year the council has earmarked £163,000 for NHS stop smoking services, despite having millions invested in tobacco companies.

Coun Stephen Alambritis, leader of Merton Council, said the council would be reviewing the council’s investments adding that the council should be “mindful” that it was not fighting to reduce something harmful on one hand, and on the other investing in it.

Coun Kirby added: “I don’t know how locked in the council is to these investments but now it’s been revealed there will be a real attempt to get out of it if we can.

“I just don’t think we should be doing it and if we can get out of it we need to get out triple quick.”

Coun Richard Williams, chairman of Merton’s Pension Fund Advisory Committee, has said the investment would be reviewed at their next meeting.


© Copyright 2001-2013 Newsquest Media Group