Tobacco Center Faculty Blog

August 16, 2013

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

Statement of Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, American Heart Association, American Lung Association and American Academy of Pediatrics

WASHINGTON, DC – It is disappointing that the United States Trade Representative (USTR) has retreated from a proposal to the pending Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement that would have made it more difficult for tobacco companies to challenge domestic tobacco control measures under the terms of international trade agreements.  The U.S. is negotiating the TPP with 11 other countries, with the next round of negotiations scheduled for August 23-30 in Brunei.

Previously, USTR in May 2012 had announced it would propose new language to the TPP that would have created a “safe harbor” protecting national tobacco control measures from being challenged under the agreement. USTR stated at the time that the proposal would “explicitly recognize the unique status of tobacco products from a health and regulatory perspective.”  Our organizations have urged – and continue to urge – USTR to move forward with this proposal and ensure nations can take effective action to reduce tobacco use, which is the number one cause of preventable death in the U.S. and around the world.

August 15, 2013

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD


The U.S. Trade Representative just can't catch a break. Neither can the breathing public.

Public health and medical advocates have urged the USTR to address the scourge of 6 million deaths a year due to tobacco use, by excluding tobacco control protections from challenge under the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP). The TPP is a 12-nation trade agreement.  Negotiators will meet again next week in Brunei.

We were encouraged by the President's promise to lead an economy for the 21st Century, to reduce preventable deaths among youth, and to
conduct policy transparently.


August 14, 2013

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

After several academic units at campuses across the University of California system started implementing policies to decline research money from the tobacco industry, then-UC President Bob Dynes objected, claiming an infringement of academic freedom and engaged the Systemwide Academic Senate to oppose these policies. 

In 2007, after a battle that lasted several years, including support of a policy of declining tobacco industry money championed by then-Chairman of the Board of Regents Richard Blum, the Regents adopted a compromise policy, RE-89, that prohibited academic units from adopting blanket policies against taking tobacco industry money but recognized that there was a need for careful review of any grant applications to the tobacco companies (or their affiliated organizations) including personal approval by the campus' chancellor before any applications could be submitted.  RE-89 also mandated annual reports to the Regents listing all tobacco industry grants and applications.

August 12, 2013

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

Fair Warning, a news service run by Myron Levin, one of the country's top reporters on the tobacco industry, has a fine piece today, "Protest by Tobacco State Politicians, Business Groups May Snuff Out Obama Administration Trade Move," that describes how the tobacco companies are working through their usual allies and third parties to fight the anemic provision that the Administration floated last year to try and protect the FDA from tobacco companies using the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) as a way of fighting regulations on tobacco products. 

While the Administration never actually tabled a formal proposal, the general principles the US Trade Representative Office presented in a conference call I participated in was so narrowly focused (on "science-based regulations") that it would have provided no protection for state or local tobacco regulations and, in the end, perhaps not even the FDA.

The article also does a nice job of describing the longstanding relationships that the tobacco companies have with a string of US Trade Representatives that it can activate when needed.

August 8, 2013

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

Many people have asked me what I thought about the report "Peering through the mist: What does the chemistry of contaminants in electronic cigarettes tell us about health risks?" that being publicized by the e-cig advocacy group CASAA.

This paper uses  the same approach to risk assessment that I remember from risk assessments done of secondhand smoke years ago by tobacco industry apologists that concluded that secondhand tobacco smoke could not produce any adverse health effects.