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Bull World Health Organ. 2015 Dec 1;93(12):877-80. doi: 10.2471/BLT.15.152744. Epub 2015 Oct 22.

The environmental and health impacts of tobacco agriculture, cigarette manufacture and consumption.

Author information

  • 1Graduate School of Public Health, San Diego State University, San Diego, United States of America (USA).
  • 2School of Nursing, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, USA .
  • 3Maxwell School Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse, New York, USA .
  • 4The Cigarette Butt Pollution Project, Washington, USA .
  • 5Secretariat for the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, Geneva, Switzerland .
  • 6Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, Canada .
  • 7Tobacco Free Initiative, World Health Organization, avenue Appia 20, 1211 Geneva 27, Switzerland .


in English, Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian, Spanish

The health consequences of tobacco use are well known, but less recognized are the significant environmental impacts of tobacco production and use. The environmental impacts of tobacco include tobacco growing and curing; product manufacturing and distribution; product consumption; and post-consumption waste. The World Health Organization's Framework Convention on Tobacco Control addresses environmental concerns in Articles 17 and 18, which primarily apply to tobacco agriculture. Article 5.3 calls for protection from policy interference by the tobacco industry regarding the environmental harms of tobacco production and use. We detail the environmental impacts of the tobacco life-cycle and suggest policy responses.

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