China leads the way in worldwide smoking rates with an estimated 300 million smokers and is the leading producer of cigarettes. Dr Dongfeng Gu of Fu Wai Hospital in Beijing, China, told Heartwire’s Lisa Nainggolan that, “The prevalence of tobacco smoking has been continuously high in adult men (around 60%).”
China is the world’s largest smoking nation and a large contributor to the 4.5 trillion cigarette butts that enter the environment every year. After struggling to find a practical use for the discarded butts, Chinese scientists have identified one benefit to recycling them – anti-corrosion. With this many smokers, deaths related to smoking in China are high but so is the problem of cigarettes butts and what to do with them. Chinese researchers believe that they now have discovered a way of recycling cigarette butts that might just help the oil industry.
Fast forward a few years, and the “stop smoking” nag pack kicks in full force and makes smoking not only a health issue but a social issue that isolates and marginalizes those who toke a little nicotine now and then or on a regular basis. Yes. Smoking is bad for you. The Surgeon General of the United States makes that clear on every pack of cigarettes that any smoker buys. Health cost are tallied and touted, but if smokers die as early as noted, then the overall health care costs should balance out. That may not be a popular sentiment, but extended life spans do cost in terms of Social Security payments, health care costs, and assisted living maintenance.