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Where Do Americans Smoke?

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The U.S. surgeon general released a new report this month warning that cigarette smoke causes immediate damage to smokers' lungs and DNA, even in small amounts and from secondhand smoke.

The report also accused U.S. manufacturers such as Altria (MO), Reynolds American (RAI), Lorillard (LO), and British American Tobacco (BTI) of deliberately making cigarettes more addictive through the use of nicotine in their products. (Hat tip: Morningstar)

Of course, the health effects of lighting up those cancer sticks have been understood by the public for decades, and there has been a long-term decline in demand for cigarettes in this country. Today, according to the CDC, fewer than 13% of Americans now smoke cigarettes every day.

But, as Slate detailed in this cool map, the drop in smokers isn't happening everywhere at the same rate, and it isn't necessarily happening among the people you’d expect.

Slate mapped the latest data about cigarette smoking by state and county, and the trends it reveals are really interesting. For instance, nearly 20% of the populations in Kentucky and West Virginia regularly lights up. Less than 10% do in California and Connecticut.

The map shows data from both counties and states, using figures from an annual nationwide survey of more than 400,000 people. The state-by-state map also breaks out the numbers by age group, and by whether people smoke regularly or occasionally.

. For the tip, we thank Newmark’s Door.
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