Greater Wellington Regional CouncilCommunity profile
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The Wellington Region

Smoking behaviour

In 2013, 12.8% of the population in the Wellington Region were regular smokers.

Smoking is the major cause of preventable disease in New Zealand. Data on smoking prevalence is used by those working in the health sector to:

  • monitor changes in smoking prevalence among the adult population of New Zealand
  • understand the profile of smokers, to better target at-risk groups in the community with future health education programmes
  • target health education programmes and evaluate the success of these
  • monitor changes in smoking statistics amongst high-risk groups in New Zealand
  • examine the inter-relationships between smoking and other socio-economic variables and how these change over time.

Derived from the Census questions:

'Do you smoke cigarettes regularly (that is, one or more a day)?', and 'Have you ever been a regular smoker of one or more cigarettes a day'

Persons aged 15 years and over

Smoking behaviour
Wellington Region20132006Change
Smoking behaviourNumber%North Island %Number%North Island %2006 to 2013
Regular smoker48,49512.813.764,86618.219.1-16,371
Ex smoker81,96621.620.275,00321.019.6+6,963
Never smoked regularly217,89657.456.5190,32653.452.3+27,570
Not stated / included30,9578.29.626,3137.49.0+4,644

Source: Statistics New Zealand, Census of Population and Dwellings 2006 and 2013. Compiled and presented in profile.id by .id , the population experts.

Smoking behaviour, 2013
Smoking behaviour, 2013 Not stated / included, North Island: 9.6% Never smoked regularly, North Island: 56.5% Ex smoker, North Island: 20.2% Regular smoker, North Island: 13.7% Not stated / included, Wellington Region : 8.2% Never smoked regularly, Wellington Region : 57.4% Ex smoker, Wellington Region : 21.6% Regular smoker, Wellington Region : 12.8%
Source: Statistics New Zealand, Census of Population and Dwellings, 2013
Compiled and presented by .id, the population experts.
Change in smoking behaviour, 2006 to 2013
Change in smoking behaviour, 2006 to 2013 Not stated / included, Wellington Region: +4,644 Never smoked regularly, Wellington Region: +27,570 Ex smoker, Wellington Region: +6,963 Regular smoker, Wellington Region: -16,371
Source: Statistics New Zealand, Census of Population and Dwellings, 2006 and 2013
Compiled and presented by .id, the population experts.

Dominant groups

Analysis of smoking behaviour in the Wellington Region in 2013 compared to North Island shows that there was a lower proportion of people were regular smokers, a higher proportion of people who were ex-smokers and a increased by proportion of people who had never smoked regularly.

Overall, 12.8% of the Wellington Region's population were current smokers, 21.6% were ex-smokers and 57.4% had never smoked regularly, compared with 13.7%, 20.2% and 56.5% for the North Island respectively.

Emerging groups

The largest changes in the smoking behaviour of the population in the Wellington Region between 2006 and 2013 were for:

  • Never smoked regularly (+27,570 persons)
  • Regular smoker (-16,371 persons)
  • Ex smoker (+6,963 persons)

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