Get Off Sidewalks, Smokers Go Inside

Outdoor Smoking Ban in Tokyo

Get Off Those Sidewalks, Smokers, and Go Inside - In many countries, it is illegal to
smoke indoors, but legal to smoke outdoors. In Tokyo, people light up with abandon
in restaurants,
taxis and many offices. But now on some congested downtown sidewalks,
new red-and-white stencils mark zones where it is illegal to smoke outdoors.
Health-conscious Americans might suspect the new rules are an effort to shield
nonsmokers from secondhand smoke, or to put a dent in cancer rates. But to Japanese
critics, the new outdoor smoking ban suggests that officials in this tidy nation worry
more about singed suits than sooty lungs. The new rules, which apply only to premier
districts of central Tokyo, are intended not to promote health, but rather to cut the
litter of discarded cigarette butts and to reduce damage to clothing on busy sidewalks.
As much as a triumph of abstainers over smokers, the new laws also reflectarare victory
for women in the country's subtle war between the sexes. Half of Japan's men smoke
a pack a day, by far the highest rate among major developed nations. In contrast,
Japanese women, who like to project an image of fresh-faced purity, smoke at the
lowest rates in the developed world --
14 percent. They have supported the ban most."

"Manners in public spaces must come ahead of individual habits," said Masami Ishikawa,
mayor of the Chiyoda ward. The ward is the nation's spiritual, political, commercial and
media nerve center, encompassing the Parliament building, the Imperial Palace, part
of the Ginza, downtown banks, hotels and companies.

"Chiyoda residents want the ward to become free of cigarette butts one very busy
street," the 60-year-old mayor added. "I hope the ordinance will prompt new rules
on the nation's smoking culture."With the measure here winning widespread publicity,
a host of other cities across the country have contacted the ward government for
advice for their own outdoor antismoking laws. But despite the annoyance of a $20
fine for smoking on a downtown sidewalkin central Tokyo, Japan is likely to remain
a smoker's paradise. The government earns $17 billion in taxes from cigarette sales,
and a"tobacco tribe" of lawmakers in Parliament makes sure that there is no
serious financing for antismoking campaigns.Japan is the world's largest importer
of cigarettes, about 83 billion a year. Japanese smokers also pay the some of the
lowest taxes in the developed world, only $1.16 a pack. With cigarette
vending machines operating nationwide, the
$2 pack costs the equivalent of eight
minutes of work in Tokyo, compared with 20 minutes in Los Angeles and 40 minutes
in London. Health advocates say the crackdown in parts of Tokyo may push some
smokers to quit. But they concede that it may also simply force smokers inside,
sparing dresses perhaps, but exposing others to more second-hand smoke than

Please refer a full story By JAMES BROOKE TOKYO, The New York Times. Nov. 28 2002.


加えている。例えば建物出入口、窓 、ダクト吸入口の20フィート(約6メートル)以内の空間を



2007年4月執筆 2009年12月加筆 
「禁煙席ネット」主宰 日本タバコフリー学会顧問 医学博士 宮本順伯
★This Web site is link-free.
The article was written in April 2007, and revised in December 2009,
by Junhaku Miyamoto, M.D., PhD.

Smoking should be banned in all public spaces.

Smoke-free Hotel and Travel

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Restaurant hotel railway rent-a-car travel airport tobacco smoking ban