Reducing Tobacco Use


If left unchecked, tobacco use will kill one billion people this century, with more than 80% of those deaths occurring in the world’s developing nations. The Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use is working to promote proven tobacco control policies around the world to help combat this global epidemic.

In 2007, Bloomberg Philanthropies supported the World Health Organization to package and promote six proven policies to reduce tobacco use worldwide. These strategies – including protecting people from tobacco smoke, offering help to quit, raising awareness about the dangers of tobacco through warning labels and public education campaigns, enforcing tobacco advertising bans, and raising the price of tobacco products – are proven to reduce smoking rates. Through strategic partnerships and a $375 million investment, Bloomberg Philanthropies is assisting governments and supporting non-governmental organizations to assure the implementation of these interventions in low- and middle-income countries that are home to the majority of the world’s smokers.

These successful outcomes have been reached with the Initiative’s global partners: the World Health Organization, the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, the CDC Foundation, the World Lung Foundation, the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is also a critical partner in the Bloomberg Initiative.

Since the Initiative began in 2007, 21 countries have passed 100% smoke-free laws, the percentage of people protected from second-hand smoke has increased 400%, and almost four billion people worldwide are now protected by at least one of the six proven tobacco control policies. The battle against tobacco is far from over, but the Initiative and its partners are prepared to continue work that will help save lives around the world.

Related Information
Statement from Mike Bloomberg on CVS decision to accelerate the end of tobacco sales
Sep. 3, 2014
CVS's decision to accelerate the end of tobacco sales at its stores and offer a smoking cessation program to customers is an important step forward for public health - and one that other pharmacies should follow.
Statement on CVS Eliminating the Sale of Tobacco Products in Stores
Feb. 5, 2014
CVS's decision to eliminate tobacco sales is a major milestone in the effort to reduce tobacco use.
Statement on City Council Passage of New Legislation to Further Reduce Smoking Rate
Oct. 30, 2013
By increasing the smoking age to 21 we will help prevent another generation from the ill health and shorter life expectancy that comes with smoking.
Announcing a Planned Series of Crackdowns Against Illegal Cigarette Sellers
Oct. 10, 2013
The crackdowns are aimed at closing cigarette retailers that sell illegal cigarettes on which State and City taxes have not been paid.
Why Is Obama Caving on Tobacco?
Aug. 22, 2013 The New York Times
The Obama administration appears to be on the verge of bowing to pressure from the tobacco industry in a move that would be a colossal public health mistake.
RT @BloombergDotOrg: Great to work with @CityLab, @TheAtlantic, and @AspenInstitute. Thanks for all your hard work - #CityLab2014 was a gre…
about 10 hours ago
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