Researchers from Stanford published a study in the May 2007 issue of Journal of the Air and Waste Management Association which measured outdoor tobacco smoke (OTS). They concluded that “it is possible for OTS to present a nuisance or hazard under certain conditions of wind and smoker proximity”(Klepeis, 522). If upwind from an active cigarette source or at least 2 meters away, OTS levels measured nearly zero. While OTS concentration levels can rival those of indoor levels when measured within 0.5 meters of an active OTS source, “unlike indoor SHS [secondhand smoke] levels, which decay slowly over a period of hours, OTS levels drop abruptly to zero when smoking ends” (Klepeis, 533).
[Update, 20nov07: Orac at Respectful Insolence, has posted an interesting entry about a Dr. Siegel who tries to look at the exaggerations of the war on smoking and SHS]
Facts, Reports, and NewsBBC News: "Should smoking be banned?"
Environmental Protection Agency
MedlinePlus (National Library of Medicine) Links page for “secondhand smoke”
National Cancer Institute: Environmental Tobacco Smoke Factsheet
National Library of Medicine secondhand smoke fact page
Respectful Insolence (a science blog by an oncologist): Blowing over secondhand smoke
US Dept. of Health and Human Services:
“The Health Consequences of Involuntary Exposure to Tobacco Smoke: A Report of the Surgeon General, June 27, 2006”
Bartecchi, C. 2006. Reduction in the incidence of acute myocardial infarction associated with a citywide smoking ordinance. Circulation, (Oct.), 114(14): 1490-6. Database: Medline.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 2007. Reduced secondhand smoke exposure after implementation of a comprehensive statewide smoking ban--New York, June 26, 2003-June 30, 2004. MMWR. Morbidity And Mortality Weekly Report, (Jul.), 56(28): 705-8. Database: Medline.
Hill, S.E. 2007. Mortality among lifelong nonsmokers exposed to secondhand smoke at home: cohort data and sensitivity analyses. American Journal of Epidemiology (Mar.), 165(5): 530-40. Database: Medline.
Klepeis, N.E., Ott, W.R., Switzer, P. 2007. Real-time measurement of outdoor tobacco smoke particles.Journal of the Air and Waste Management Association (May), 57(5): 522-534. Available in the Science-Health Science Library.
Ott, W. R., Siegmann, H. C. 2006. Using multiple continuous fine particle monitors to characterize tobacco, incense, candle, cooking, wood burning, and vehicular sources in indoor, outdoor, and in-transit settings. Atmospheric Environment, (Feb.), 40(5): 821-843. Database: Medline.
Repace, J. 2000. Banning outdoor smoking is scientifically justifiable. Tobacco Control, (Mar.), 9(1): 98. Database: Medline.
Zellers, L. 2007. Legal risks to employers who allow smoking in the workplace. American Journal of Public Health, (Aug.), 97(8): 1376-82. Database: Medline.
About Calculating Risk Factor: Relative and Absolute
Relative Risk (RR) of cancer from secondhand smoke approximate average = 1.3
(ie RR = risk of cancer for smokers/risk of cancer for non-smokers)
PubMed (National Library of Medicine): "Statistics Review 11"
Family Health Outcomes Project (PDF):