More than 8 million people die from tobacco use every year, said the United Nations on Tuesday to mark the World No Tobacco Day.
Elaborating on the implication, the World Health Organization (WHO) highlighted that 600,000,000 trees are chopped, 84,000,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide is released into the air, and 22,000,000 tonnes of water is used up.
According to the health agency, the consumption of tobacco worldwide has a devastating impact for the environment too. WHO in a fact-sheet highlights that it can be linked to large-scale deforestation, and loss of biodiversity, including wildlife.
It further stated that apart from depletion of the planet’s water, it is also responsible for exhaustion of fossil fuel and metal resources, desertification, depleting soil fertility.
"Exuberant emission of greenhouse gases, contamination of drinking water, and emission of toxicants in the air via direct, second- and third-hand smoke,” has been counted among other challenges.
With cigarette butts being non-biodegradable, the environment faces a further danger, the WHO fact-sheet says, adding that degradation of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems is another issue.
On the World Tobacco Day, an interesting statistics has been shared by Australia’s Cancer Council, which highlights challenges faced by smokers in quitting. “Around two-thirds of Australian smokers undertook at least one activity to help them quit in 2019[iii], but we know it can be an incredibly challenging task. Implementing an integrated multi-channel, public education campaign would not only motivate and support current smokers to quit, it would also play an important role in de-normalising tobacco use and discouraging uptake among young people,” it said.