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World No Tobacco Day – Protect the Environment

World No Tobacco Day is celebrated on 31st May every year. Its primary objective is to raise global consciousness about the deleterious consequences of tobacco on health. It also highlights the risk associated with the use of tobacco and makes people understand how second-hand smoke affects smoker, their family, and their community. It is also important to advocate policies that reduce the use of tobacco.

The theme of World No Tobacco Day 2022 is "Protect the environment". It's highlighting that, throughout its lifecycle, tobacco pollutes the planet and damages the health of all people.

The Member States of the World Health Organization (WHO) created World No Tobacco Day in 1987 to draw global attention to the tobacco epidemic and the preventable death and disease it causes. In 1987, the World Health Assembly passed Resolution WHA40.38, calling for 7 April 1988 to be "a world no-smoking day." In 1988, Resolution WHA42.19 was passed, calling for the celebration of World No Tobacco Day, every year on 31 May.

Tobacco kills over 8 million people every year and demolishes our environment, further impairing human health, through the cultivation, production, distribution, consumption, and post-consumer waste.

Since tobacco affects every organ in the body, it leads to cancer of other organs as well such as the pharynx, esophagus, stomach, and pancreas, and causes several non-cancer diseases. Chronic obstructive lung disease, coronary artery disease, peripheral vascular disease, and tobacco-related amblyopia leading to blindness are a few of the serious illnesses caused by this deadly substance.

Tobacco growing, manufacturing, and use poison our water, soil, beaches, and city streets with chemicals, toxic waste, cigarette butts, including microplastics, and e-cigarette waste. Tobacco smoke contributes to higher air pollution levels and contains three kinds of greenhouse gases.

Governments and policymakers should support tobacco farmers to switch to alternative, more sustainable livelihoods to reduce the environmental impact of tobacco growing, curing, and manufacturing while continuing to implement tobacco control measures.

Let us make every day a World No Tobacco Day!


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