Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Irish Smoking Ban reduces air pollution, improves health

The Spiegel links to this interesting article about the positive effects of the Irish smoking ban. Since the ban in 2004, the carcinogens in pub air has drastically reduced, and the health of the 81 bar staff in the study has significantly improved.
The Deutsche Krebsforschungszentrum (DKFZ - German Cancer Research Centre) are pointing to this study as important input into the upcoming decision on Germany's implementation of a smoking ban. The public support for a ban in Germany is growing - now 67% favour Rauchverbot, compared to 53% just a year ago.
The only thing standing in the way seems to be the rather arcane workings of the German federal system (the smoking ban has to be implemented by the Länder rather than Bund, and needs more consensus because of this). For example, Bavaria wants to exclude Oktoberfest tents, and Saarland small pubs.
The Irish study proves that the health benefits are more important than these provincial exceptions, so let's hope we get some clean air in Germany.

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