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 smoking, snuffing, chewing, dipping tobacco, or snus.


Smoking opponents fired up

People are driving from Topeka to Lawrence to eat in smoke-free restaurants.

The Topeka City Council heard that argument repeatedly Tuesday evening as it considered an ordinance to ban smoking in public places in Topeka.

One of the speakers under the public comments portion of the meeting was Ed Serrano, an economic development specialist for the state of Kansas. He said he knows people who are driving to Lawrence for the clear air.

“I don’t know of any people who are driving to Topeka to sit in clouds of smoke,” he said.

The ordinance was heard on first reading Tuesday, meaning no action could be taken on it. Normally an ordinance is on the next city council agenda for a vote, but council members decided to put off final action until Sept. 29 to give more people the opportunity to express their feelings on the matter.

Meanwhile, the council will conduct two public hearings to listen to the public — on Mondays Sept. 21 and 28. The times and locations weren’t specified.

The ordinance was discussed in an informal work session preceding the council’s action meeting over the objections of Councilman John Alcala. Soon after the presentation began, he said it appeared all of the speakers were pro-ordinance people invited by Councilwoman Deborah Swank, the author of the ordinance. They were people with expertise in the effects of second-hand smoke.

Alcala objected that if pro-ordinance people were going to speak, the community should have been alerted that anyone who wanted to speak could do so.

But Swank, presiding at the work session, allowed the speakers to continue.

As it turned out, not one person opposed to the ordinance spoke during the entire evening. During public comments of the regular council meeting, only two people addressed the issue of the ordinance — Serrano and Topeka High School Matthew Bevens — and both argued for the ordinance.

Among the speakers at the work session was Candace Ayars, director of the tobacco use prevention program of the Kansas Department of Healthy and Environment.

She presented results of studies that showed a strong correlation between smoking and a number of diseases, including lung and heart diseases.

“There is no risk-free level of exposure,” she said.

She said even sitting behind someone smoking on outdoor bleachers for three hours exposes a person to the equivalent of smoking one cigarette themselves.

Physician James Hamilton showed a picture of a family friend who died of lung cancer even though she had never smoked. The likely cause, he said, was second-hand smoke.

Ayars listed a number of conclusions based on scientific studies:

- 31 states have passed bans on public smoking.

- 35 communities in Kansas have passed such ordinances.

- Three counties have those types of laws.

- 50 percent of Kansans live in cities with clean air laws.

- Children in cities that have strict limits on where smoking can occur are 40 percent less likely to take up smoking.

Other speakers equated the problem with the national health care concern. Everyone’s health insurance premiums can go down when fewer people are smoking, said Marlou Wegener, of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas.

Rachel Smit, of the Kansas Health Institute, said Kansas is losing $863 million a year in lost productivity from smokers becoming ill.

Council members also heard that Topeka is the largest city in Kansas without a public smoking ban.

Mike Hall can be reached at (785) 295-1209 or [email protected]

© Copyright: August 26, 2009 Cjonline

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1 comment to Smoking opponents fired up

  • Bob

    Here’s a popular ban that has been used by many communities. No need to waste a lot of time. “Smoking Ban for Dummies”
    Just click “print” then fill in the blanks naming your community and administrators names, and pass it. Bingo, an instant law. You don’t even need to read all the legal mumbo jumbo. Simple, even for the most mentally challenged. This model ban can be customized to your location depending on how wide your local sidewalks are.

    It’s on page eight of the tobacco control handbook:

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