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Experts say vapes get young people hooked on nicotine and contain plastic and batteries

Single-use vapes ‘harm children and the environment and should be banned’: Experts say the devices get young people hooked on nicotine and contain plastic and batteries

  • Single-use e-cigarettes are a ‘rapidly escalating threat’, say health groups
  • Therese Coffey and Health Secretary Steve Barclay wrote an open letter
  • Cheap vapes are getting children hooked on nicotine, it was claimed
  • About 1.3 million disposable vape devices are thrown away each week 

Disposible vapes pose a danger to children’s health and the environment and should be banned, doctors and charities warned yesterday.

The single-use e-cigarettes are a ‘rapidly escalating threat’, according to environment and health groups who have written an open letter to Environment Secretary Therese Coffey and Health Secretary Steve Barclay.

Signatories including the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, the RSPCA and the Marine Conservation Society.

The cheap vapes, which come in fruity flavours that appeal to youngsters, are getting children hooked on nicotine, it is claimed.

File photo: The single-use e-cigarettes are a ‘rapidly escalating threat’, according to environment and health groups who have written an open letter to Environment Secretary Therese Coffey and Health Secretary Steve Barclay

The letter states: ‘Uptake among young people is particularly concerning, with multiple health professionals warning that, instead of helping existing smokers to give up the habit, they could create a whole new generation hooked on nicotine.

‘The harms of vaping are, as yet, not fully established but there is concern regarding increased risk of chronic lung conditions.’

The groups also argue that disposable vapes are ‘unnecessary electrical items’ that contain single-use plastic, nicotine and batteries, all of which are ‘hazardous to the environment and wildlife when littered’.

About 1.3 million disposable vape devices are thrown away each week – or two every second – enough to fill 22 football pitches a year, according to research by Material Focus.

The groups say that because reusable vapes are available, banning single-use e-cigarettes would not stop public health efforts to help people quit smoking or the Government’s commitment to achieve a smoke-free generation by 2030.

Libby Peake, of the Green Alliance environmental think-tank which organised the letter, said: ‘We need to be moving towards durable and reusable products designed sustainably, not inventing new ways to cause harm to the wildlife and wasting valuable resources.’

File photo: About 1.3 million disposable vape devices are thrown away each week ¿ or two every second ¿ enough to fill 22 football pitches a year

File photo: About 1.3 million disposable vape devices are thrown away each week – or two every second – enough to fill 22 football pitches a year

It comes as US researchers found that people who vape are more at risk of tooth cavities.

And vaping appears to encourage decay in areas where it usually doesn’t occur, such as the bottom edges of front teeth.

A previous study, published in the journal PLOS one, compared e-cigarettes to sweets and acidic drinks.

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