Aging Population and Tobacco Hazards: “Synergistic Environmental Tobacco Control” Boosts Efforts — An Examination of China’s Tobacco Control in 2022 from a Civilian Perspective
2023/5/29 15:44:00 本站

On May 26, 2023, the “New Explorations for Health Development Research Center” released the report titled “China’s Tobacco Control in 2022: A Civilian Perspective” in Beijing. The China Biodiversity Conservation and Green Development Foundation (CBCGDF) was invited to participate in this event.

The observation report cited the modeling analysis results from a study published in 2021 titled “Cancer Deaths Related to Smoking in Older Populations (China 2020-2040): A Population-Based Modeling Study.” It revealed that China’s smoking epidemic peaked in the late 1980s and 1990s, while the peak in smoking-related deaths typically occurs several decades later. Therefore, the peak in lung cancer deaths in China is yet to come. The study also considered the factor of China’s population aging, estimating that by around 2035, the number of individuals aged 60 and above in China will surpass 400 million, entering a stage of severe aging. In line with this, the observation report predicts a significant increase in smoking-related cancer mortality rates from 2020 to 2040, with a rise of up to 44% among males and 53% among females. These figures do not include cancer deaths caused by second-hand smoke.

Another highlight of the report is the emphasis on tobacco and environmental issues, building upon the World Health Organization’s theme for World No Tobacco Day in 2022, which focused on “Tobacco Threatens the Environment.” The report’s section on tobacco control efforts in 2022 highlights topics related to tobacco and the environment, including the creation of smoke-free environments and the active promotion of tobacco control by social organizations.

Pages 15-16 of the report describe the tobacco control public interest litigations and ecological environment patrol activities conducted by the CBCGDF from an environmental protection perspective. These include the CBCGDF’s concerns regarding tobacco waste in natural areas such as scenic spots, wetlands, rivers, and forests, their efforts to involve the Ministry of Ecology and Environment in the inter-ministerial coordination leading group for the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, and their research on the impact of tobacco and environmental taxes on mitigating tobacco-related environmental pollution.

Social organizations play a crucial role in tobacco control. Since 2009, the New Explorations for Health Development Research Center has observed China’s tobacco control efforts from a civilian perspective annually. The release of the “China's Tobacco Control: A Civilian Perspective” report in 2023 marks its 14th consecutive year.

As a signatory to the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, China is actively promoting the implementation of the convention’s objectives from various aspects. Among them, the fourth special focus of the Healthy China Action is the implementation of tobacco control measures, with the goals of achieving a population coverage of 30% or more under comprehensive smoke-free regulations by 2022 and 80% or more by 2030, as well as reducing the adult smoking rate to below 20% by 2030.

Currently, there is still a significant gap between the current situation and the achievement of tobacco control and the goals of the Healthy China Action. The path ahead is long and challenging, but progress is inevitable. The tobacco control working group of the CBCGDF will continue to collaborate with various public welfare organizations to assist government departments and strive for continuous progress in tobacco control from the perspective of ecological civilization.

Reporter: Tammy

Translator: Linda

Editor: Victoria

Contact:; +8617319454776


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