Friday, March 19, 2010

California considers smoke-free parks and beaches

California is home to hundreds of national and state parks (approximately 279 parks). Some of the most famous parks in the U.S. are located in California or have a portion of the park in California. 

California  is also known for its Pacific Coastal environment including many beaches.
Right now the California State Assembly is considering a bill that will make all parks and beaches 100% smoke-free. This bill has three main goals in mind. First this legislations would reduce exposure to secondhand smoke. It also aims to reduce or eliminate toxic trash or cigarette butts (To learn more about cigarette butts as toxic trash click here.). The final goal would be reduce the risk of wildfires. 

It is believed that this would be the most restrictive policy in terms of smoke-free beaches and parks because it extends to all beaches at all times. There is one exemption for smoking at individual campsites. Given California's budget crunch, parks that could not afford to buy no smoking signs would also be exempt. The California Parks Department is remaining neutral in the discussion this year. Last year they opposed the policy due to the cost of  purchasing and posting signs. 

Check back for more details as this legislation advances. 

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