June 14, 2019
Smoking Impact on Nature
The environment is the last thing anyone thinks of when it comes to the negative effects of the tobacco and cigarette industry. Although it is not the first thing people think of, the industry does have a huge negative impact on the environment.
Every step of the process influences the environment. From growing tobacco to discarded cigarette pollution, the process takes a toll on the earth. Smoking is harmful, not only for humans but to animals, plants, and nature. The entire process, from start to finish, impact the environment negatively and needs more attention to stop this issue.
The smoking industry harms nature from the beginning of the process to end. Growing tobacco requires large plots of land. This land is often acquired by chopping down trees to clear out growing-plots.
The practice of clearing out nature for tobacco production is known as deforestation.
Deforestation removes trees and vegetation from a particular area. It is helpful for tobacco growers, but it disrupts the natural ecosystem of the region. When these areas get taken down, the plants become destroyed, animals lose their homes, and soil fertility gets disrupted.
Wildfires are another effect of smoking on the environment. They are commonly started by cigarette waste. In fact, about 17,000 deaths worldwide are attributed to from wildfires started by a lit cigarette or lighter. Fires can be started by one spark from a cigarette and can run rampant. They cause paths of destruction for humans in the area, as well as the local ecosystems. These fires destroy large patches of the environment, leading to deforestation. The environmental effect of deforestation due to wildfires is at the same level as human-driven forestation.
- Deforestation is the largest human-driven cause of specific ecosystem destruction.
When forests get cleared to make room for tobacco plants, all creatures have to evacuate the habitat they call home. All nests or burrows get destroyed and wildlife have to abandon their habitats. This leads to decreased biodiversity of the ecosystem, as well as the potential for species to become endangered or extinct.
- Cigarette pollution in the environment also affects the lives of animals. When Cigarette butts and packaging end up in the environment, animals are at risk of consuming them. When this pollution gets consumed, its chemicals enter the animal’s bloodstream.
The chemicals act as a poison and could end up killing them. Additionally, this debris cannot be digested by animals. When consumed, the debris gets trapped in the animal’s stomach. This impacts the way the animal eats and can lead to the inability to absorb nutrients.