Pardon My Carcinogen

Secondhand tobacco smoke, an EPA board confirms, can cause cancer

The fact that smoking causes lung cancer is so well established that only the tobacco companies still claim to have doubts. Now an Environmental Protection Agency review board, acting on a draft report produced within the agency, says nonsmokers are in danger as well. "Environmental tobacco smoke" -- better known as secondhand smoke -- inhaled by those who associate with smokers leads to about 3,000 cases of lung cancer a year in the U.S. and 300,000 cases of respiratory disease. Conclusion: secondhand smoke should be classified as a major carcinogen, which could lead to even stronger restrictions on smoking in public.

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