Bloomberg and Gates Foundation pledge half a billion dollars to fight smoking

New York’s billionaire mayor and the country’s largest foundation are teaming up to kick smoking in the butt.

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is going to invest $125 million to fight tobacco use and push for tobacco-control policies in developing countries, according to a Bloomberg story posted on the Gates foundation’s Web site. The total includes a $24 million commitment to Michael Bloomberg’s Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use, which the mayor started in 2005 to help developing countries control tobacco abuse.

Bloomberg started the initiative with a $125 million outlay. He will now add another $250 million of his own money over the next four years.

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