Californians smokes less than most other Americans.

According to a research released previous week by the California Department of Public Health, just 13.1 percent of California residents reported smoking last year, compared with 20.6 percent nationally.

California currently has the second-lowest smoking rate in the country, trailing only Utah.

The declining rate here reflects a culture that is particularly conscious of health and the environment, and it was hailed by state officials as evidence of the success of a strategy to demonize smoking.