48 CANCER CONTROL 2014
be provided to farmers in diversifying crops as well as
establishing other uses for the tobacco that is grown.
‰ Parts of the world most in need of further tobacco control
action, or "tobacco hot spots", should be given special
media attention and assistance, especially in cases where
litigation is involved.
‰ The tobacco industry should not be involved in tobacco
control at any level, as they may challenge national
legislation and try to disguise their actions as "socially
‰ Political will is necessary to help enforce tobacco control
policies and protect the public from self-serving tobacco
Tobacco use continues to be widespread and is the single
largest cause of cancer worldwide. Its use accounts for at
least 30% of all cancer deaths in developed countries with
the potential to impact the rest of the world in a similar
manner. The epidemiology of smoking in high-income
nations has shown lung cancer progressing from a rare
disease to the most common cause of cancer death,
surpassing the number of cancer deaths from the next four
leading causes of cancer combined. There are currently
more than 1 million lung cancer deaths a year globally, 85%
of which are caused by smoking.
The tobacco epidemic that has unfolded in many highincome countries could potentially be curbed or prevented
low- and middle-income countries that have not yet seen the
dramatic increase in smoking prevalence rates and thus the
resulting illness and death caused by tobacco use and
exposure. The Tobacco Atlas is a comprehensive tobacco
control collection of global statistics and trend information
designed to track and describe the global tobacco epidemic.
It includes data on prevalence, harm from smoking, personal
and societal costs of use, and industry behaviour, while
illuminating solutions to this global problem. By arming the
public with information about the crisis and suggesting
guidelines to aid tobacco control, The Tobacco Atlas provides
valuable tools to aid the tobacco control movement in its goal
to prevent further global harm, in turn preventing avoidable
cancer morbidity and mortality. l
The authors would like to thank Judith Mackay and Hana Ross for
their co-authorship of The Tobacco Atlas, Fourth Edition.
Michael Eriksen, ScD is the Dean of the School of Public Health
at Georgia State University (GSU) and lead author of The
Tobacco Atlas, Fourth Edition. Dr Eriksen is a global tobacco
control expert who has published extensively on tobacco
prevention and control and was the longest-serving director of
the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Office on
Smoking and Health.
Amy Nyman, MA has over 20 years of research experience with
a strong focus on tobacco-related research.
Carrie Whitney, MPH provided research assistance and support
to The Tobacco Atlas, Fourth Edition, and manages various
tobacco control projects at GSU.
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[homepage on the internet]. Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization; 2013.
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