tocacco plant Native American Tobaccoo flower, leaves, and buds

tocacco Tobacco is an annual or bi-annual growing 1-3 meters tall with large sticky leaves that contain nicotine. Native to the Americas, tobacco has a long history of use as a shamanic inebriant and stimulant. It is extremely popular and well-known for its addictive potential.

tocacco nicotina Nicotiana tabacum

tocacco Nicotiana rustica leaves. Nicotiana rustica leaves have a nicotine content as high as 9%, whereas Nicotiana tabacum (common tobacco) leaves contain about 1 to 3%

tocacco cigar A cigar is a tightly rolled bundle of dried and fermented tobacco which is ignited so that its smoke may be drawn into the mouth. Cigar tobacco is grown in significant quantities in Brazil, Cameroon, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Indonesia, Mexico, Nicaragua, Sumatra, Philippines, and the Eastern United States.

tocacco Tobacco is an agricultural product processed from the fresh leaves of plants in the genus Nicotiana. It can be consumed, used as an organic pesticide, and in the form of nicotine tartrate it is used in some medicines. In consumption it may be in the form of cigarettes smoking, snuffing, chewing, dipping tobacco, or snus.

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Cost of Cigarette Litter May Fall on San Francisco’s Smokers

In what he casts as an attack on litterbugs and nicotine addiction alike, Mayor Gavin Newsom wants to impose a fee on an age-old inhabitant of city streets: the cigarette butt.

The proposal, to be introduced next month to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, would add 33 cents to the cost of a pack of cigarettes, to offset the estimated $10.7 million the city spends annually removing discarded butts from gutters, drainpipes and sidewalks.

The added cost, Mr. Newsom hopes, will also dampen smokers’ urge to light up.

“In general, fees help reduce the consumption and use of tobacco,” he said in an interview. “And we think that will have a very beneficial public health component.”

Officials here say the municipal fee would be the first in the country to take aim specifically at cigarette butts, particularly filters, which are not biodegradable. But the idea is expected to run into fierce opposition from tobacco companies.

“Obviously we think people should follow the littering laws, in California and elsewhere,” said Frank Lester, a spokesman for Reynolds American Inc., the nation’s second-largest manufacturer of cigarettes. “But we oppose any additional taxation on smokers to pay for that.”

Philip Morris USA, the nation’s biggest cigarette company, generally echoed that anti-fee sentiment, though it said it would not comment on Mr. Newsom’s proposal specifically until it was formally presented to the board.

San Francisco has already proved to be tough on smokers. Last year the city imposed a ban on the sale of tobacco at drugstores, a restriction that is being challenged in state and federal courts.

Mr. Newsom, moreover, has shown a willingness to legislate good health in other ways, proposing a fee in 2007 on any large store that sells drinks with high levels of fructose corn syrup. This so-called soda tax has not yet been taken up by the Board of Supervisors but is expected to be debated there this summer, said Nathan Ballard, a mayoral spokesman.

Mr. Newsom said cigarette butts became a target after San Francisco’s annual “litter audit” found that cigarette detritus made up a quarter of all the trash in the city’s public spaces. With the city spending some $44 million a year on litter cleanup — and facing a $500 million deficit for the coming fiscal year — a fee was born.

“It’s not a huge part of the overall budget,” the mayor said of the $11 million or so in annual revenue that the fee could generate. “But it’s enough to keep street sweepers employed.”

But Mr. Lester, of Reynolds American, said smokers were often targets of budget-crunched legislators, most recently on April 1, when the federal excise tax on cigarettes rose 62 cents a pack, to $1.01. “We feel smokers are already paying their fair share,” he said.

Serena Chen, regional director of policy and tobacco programs for the American Lung Association in California, said litter-mitigation efforts aimed specifically at cigarettes had been proposed in legislatures in a couple of states (though never enacted), but that a city-level approach was new and welcome.

“Anytime you raise the price of cigarettes, you discourage new starters,” Ms. Chen said, “and you increase the motivation of people who want to quit.”

A version of this article appeared in print on May 19, 2009, on page A14 of the New York edition.

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