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Open AccessArticle

From Plant to Waste: The Long and Diverse Impact Chain Caused by Tobacco Smoking

Departamento de Oceanografia e Limnologia, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte, Via Costeira S/N, Praia de Mãe Luíza, Natal 59014-100, Brazil
Departamento de Oceanografia, Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Av. Arquitetura, s/n, Recife 50740-550, Brazil
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(15), 2690;
Received: 9 July 2019 / Revised: 23 July 2019 / Accepted: 25 July 2019 / Published: 28 July 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plastic Pollution)
Smoking is a social phenomenon of global scope. The impacts start from the cultivation of the plant to the disposal of cigarette butts in the most diverse places. These aspects go beyond economic and public health issues, also affecting natural environments and their biota in a serious and indistinct way. Of the six trillion cigarettes consumed globally each year, four and a half trillion are disposed somewhere in the environment. Cigarette butts are predominantly plastic, non-biodegradable waste, prevalent in coastal environments in various parts of the world, and with high potential for generating impacts on a wide range of socioeconomic and environmental aspects. Among the 5000 compounds found in a cigarette, those with higher toxic potential are mainly concentrated in the filter and in tobacco remnants, which are items found in discarded cigarette butts. After surveying published studies on this topic, the present study addressed the interaction between the impacts related to tobacco smoking, highlighting the problem as an important and emerging issue that demands joint efforts, and actions especially focused on the reduction of environmental impacts, an aspect that has not yet been assessed. View Full-Text
Keywords: plastic pollution; cigarette butts; environmental impacts; tobacco smoking plastic pollution; cigarette butts; environmental impacts; tobacco smoking
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MDPI and ACS Style

Araújo, M.C.B.; Costa, M.F. From Plant to Waste: The Long and Diverse Impact Chain Caused by Tobacco Smoking. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16, 2690.

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