Is The Potential EU Ban On Electronic Cigarettes A Red Herring?

April 29, 2022 2 min read

Does the EU really think banning refillable electronic cigarettes is a step in the right direction? Well I suppose it all depends on the direction you are aiming to take...

There has been a massive backlash from vapers on the new plans that could mean the untimely death of the refillable electronic cigarette. Having read up on the situation there seems to be 2 main arguments with first stating that it’s all a red herring and a money making decision while the opposing argument is that the new plans will bring regulation and safety to all users of the e-cig.

Argument 1: Public Health Vs Private Wealth

At current rates estimations show that e-cigs could overtake and virtually replace smoking in as little as the next few decades, hence why some big time tobacco companies have already bought into them. Even though research is still in its infancy on vaping it has still so far found them to be of minimal or no medical concern especially when placed side by side with its alternative counterpart. With no to little smokers left this inevitably leads to a massive decline in the smoking related diseases thus the pharmaceutical losing out on their massive cash cow. The new nicotine limit will ultimately stop new people taking up e cigarettes due to a large proportion of them starting on a high nicotine level and then slowly weaning down and users who already are vaping not ready to drop down to the proposed amount will only have one option which would be to turn backwards and start smoking again.

Argument 2: Public Health Vs Private Wealth

The second argument is that this is long overdue and that the new rules would ensure that users of electronic cigarettes will only benefit from ensured quality and safety of the products. Another argument put forward by EU governments is that the refillable cartridges are dangerous because they allow drug users to vape other serious drugs other than nicotine. One European official was quoted as saying “Heroin users may find this an attractive pathway to their heroin”.

It is clear from the 99% of commenters from both vapers and none vapers on posts surrounding this subject that a ban on refillable cigarettes would be a bad thing.

One commenter wrote "Unless forced to by the law I will never smoke tobacco again, e-cigs are a gateway from smoking”.

“Unless forced to by the law...”.This statement alone speaks volumes. What happened to democracy? Ok so this new rule isn't exactly challenging democracy per say, but shouldn't a vaper who wants to quit smoking be able to choose the nicotine level they use instead of being told what is and what isn't acceptable?

In agreement, Rebecca Taylor, a Liberal Democrat MEP and health spokeswoman in the European parliament said: "Significant ground had been won in the rejection of Europe wide medicines licensing. But the decision to potentially ban refillable cartridges and devices in future would be a backward step."

There needs to be a middle ground here. Regulation to a degree is not necessary a bad thing if done properly but the proposed plans by the EU are not the way to go.