Health Alberta health groups are pushing for a smoking ban in provincial parks, starting with those with fire bans already in effect.
Beyond the adverse health effects second hand smoke causes, many Alberta wildfires are ignited by smoking-related material, the groups say. Six per cent of all fires in Alberta parks between 1996 and 2005 were due to careless smoking.
“A total ban on smoking in provincial parks sounds unnecessary,” says smoker Dan Pousette.
“In the long term I think it’s a bad move for health … it will keep a large number of people out of the wilderness and fresh air.
“I’d love to see parks free of cigarette butts though.”
Alberta Provincial Parks open May 1. Currently 15 provincial parks and recreation areas have fire bans in place.