The United Nations on Tuesday said that every year, more than 8 million people die from tobacco use. This comment, by the UN comes while it marks the ‘World No Tobacco Day’. The World Health Organisation (WHO) in its highlights said 600,000,000 trees are chopped, 84,000,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide is released into the air, and 22,000,000,000 tonnes of water is used up in the world.

According to the WHO, the consumption of tobacco worldwide has a devastating impact for the environment too. In a fact-sheet, the world health body highlights that it can be linked to large-scale deforestation, and loss of biodiversity, including wildlife.

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“Exuberant emission of greenhouse gases, contamination of drinking water, and emission of toxicants in the air via direct, second- and third-hand smoke,” have been counted among other challenges.

In its fact-sheet, the WHO further went on to say that with cigarette butts being non-biodegradable, the environment faces a further danger, adding that degradation of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems is another issue.

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On World Tobacco Day, an interesting statistic 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, 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.

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Meanwhile, World No Tobacco Day is observed with a different theme every year. This year, the theme of World no Tobacco Day is “Protect The Environment”.

The 2022 global campaign aims to raise public awareness about the environmental impact of the entire tobacco cycle, from its cultivation, production, and distribution to the toxic waste it generates.

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This year, the theme focuses on the impact of tobacco on the environment.

In 1987, the WHO passed a resolution that announced April 7, 1988, as World No Smoking Day. The act was passed to motivate people to prevent using tobacco for at least 24 hours. Later in 1988, the organisation passed another resolution that the ‘World No Tobacco Day’ will be observed on May 31.