According to the Tobacco Atlas, six million lives were lost due to tobacco use in 2011. They also said about 600,000 people died from secondhand smoke exposure in 2011, and nearly 75 percent of those were women and children. The most recent version of the atlas was presented at a conference in Singapore. In the 10 years since the first one was published, about 50 million people have died from tobacco use. The number one cause of death in China, Turkey and Kazakhstan is tobacco use. By 2030 it could be causing 3.5 million deaths a year in China.
The top six tobacco companies in the world had 35 billion dollars in revenue for 2010. The whole industry takes in about 500 billion per year.
Tobacco Atlas is a publication of the World Lung Foundation, and the American Cancer Society. The book is useful for government administrators, public health officials and interested parties who want to understand the impact of tobacco on society and how well organized the tobacco industry is. The book has a companion website where you can see statistics, information about the authors and more.
Too many children are smoking as well. A press release from the U.S. Surgeon General states 3,800 children start smoking in the U.S. every day. Ninety percent of current smokers started before 18, so it is very important to educate teens about the very negative impact of smoking before they start.
“Evidence shows that advertising by Big Tobacco not only encourages youth to start using tobacco, but also encourages them to keep using these deadly and addictive products,” says the recent press release.
Children in Indonesia start smoking long before American children do. About two percent of children there start before they are four years old.
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