back to article The ‘Vaping Crackdown’ starts today. This is what you need to know

Draconian new regulations on vaping come into effect today – but for many vapers, it won’t feel like a crackdown, at least, not right away, Written into the EU’s revised Tobacco Products Directive were new rules restricting the supply, manufacture and promotion of things which aren’t tobacco products at all, but which have …

Anonymous Coward

Re: About time

The printable, reusable version.

I'm tired of seeing _______ flaunt their filthy addiction in public. It's a disgusting habit as is _______.

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Big Brother

Follow the money?

So how much of this is either greed to get the cash from all the now-required testing and suchlike (with its mentioned fees), and of course to try and prevent existing smokers actually quitting and so losing all that lovely tax revenue from the money they're burning?

All it'll do of course is drive things underground...

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Re: Follow the money?

IN fairness to the MHRA and DoH, they've set the fees down to be pretty much enough to run the backend paperwork side of things; as the article mentions, around £150 for new notifications and about£80 for changes. It's still a lot for vendors and producers, but in Austria and other states, they've gone mental and set the fees at €4000 or so.

As for preventing existing smokers from quitting? I doubt that's genuinely the reasoning behind it, but it will be the functional outcome, as many, many smokers start on liquids stronger than 20mg/ml to successfully replace the throat hit that 20+ a day gives cravings for, before they tend to transpose down to lower levels.

But of course, if they don't transpose initially, they'll never be happy with the lower levels, and will continue smoking.

Steven R

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Regulation is sensible the article is not

The purpose of an e-cigarette is to introduce a pharmecutical into the body through the lungs. The most common pharmecutical is very toxic and addictive.

There are obvious hazards of overdose an dthe introduction of unintended chemcials into the body.

The idea that this should not be regulated in some way is crazy. Traditional smoking is known to be very damaging to health. We have no long term data but have good reasons to vapping will be much less damaging to health, but given what is known about nicotine even if there are no unexpected effects, impurities, acccidental over doses etc then there will still be a negative imapct on health. This has to be regulated in the same way there are food safety regulations for example. Those regulations were introduced because peoples health was being damaged in some cases dying.

The fact that vapping is probably not a dangerous a smoking does not mean that we should not make them acceptably safe. I cannot comment on thd precise quantaties and concenrtaions but the proposed regulations seem sensible and not at all onerous as evidenced by the fact that the article itself says that it will not seem like a crackdown.

I was prompted to read the regulations by the articles clear bias. They are in the main very sensible requirements on reporting, labelling and obvious basic safety requirments. The only thing beyond this are concentration and volume limits which as a non-vapper I have no idea about but there are clear safety benefits to having such limits. The fact that he regulation is so light show sthat he benefits of vapping are appreciated and a sensible approach has been taken.

The EMC regulations for e-cigarrettes are more onerous than these. Andrew seems to have lost contact with reality.

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Re: Regulation is sensible the article is not

The regulations only seem reasonable if you don't have a solid grasp of the way vaping works, why it works, and the science behind it.

That's why those who have read up on it - the Royal College of Physicians, the Lords, and most advocates, are dead set against it.

Deaths from smoking last year = 100,000

Deaths from vaping last year = 0

For reference, in the doses you'd get from an e-cig, nicotine is not a danger to human health in any common sense way of looking at it. No-one has ever OD'd (in a manner dangerous to their health - you just stop toking and you're fine in five minutes) on nicotine from a vape device, period.

Again, as I posted elsewhere, have a look at the comments I posted in the last article (you can just click my name), I went into no small amount of detail as to why these regulations are not fit for purpose.

Steven R

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Re: Regulation is sensible the article is not

Why do you insist on comparing vaping only to cigarette smoking? That's pure cherry-picking. Nobody has disputed that the all-vaping world is better than the all-cigarette world, but neither is the world we actually live in. Vaping needs to be considered *on its own merits* and not just in comparison to something we all know is bad. Doing X and vaping carries some risks that doing X alone does not, for all X. Those risks, which are and are likely to remain better known/understood or controlled by vendors than by consumers, are a legitimate subject of legal/regulatory interest. If you think these particular regulations are too draconian, the constructive response would be to suggest alternatives. Trying to dismiss all possible regulation makes you seem like an ideologue, and trying to suggest that vaping is a net public-health positive makes you look delusional.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Regulation is sensible the article is not

I don't think anyone is trying to dismiss all regulation. The question is do e-cigarettes need additional regulation beyond that which would be applied to a consumer product. Perhaps they do but the regulations proposed in the TPD on maximum strength and volume have no scientific rationale.

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Re: Regulation is sensible the article is not

"Why do you insist on comparing vaping only to cigarette smoking?"

I dunno, because 99% of vapers are ex smokers, and smoking is the only comparable act? That's not cherry picking, that's actual real world usage. That's how you're supposed to compare things.

Jesus man, use your head, eh?

And as has been stated, no-one is saying "no regualtion" - we're saying "this regulation is inappapropriate and not backed up by the scientific evidence"

If they can come with something that actually fits, we'll be perfectly happy.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Regulation is sensible the article is not

>For reference, in the doses you'd get from an e-cig, nicotine is not a danger to human health in any common sense way of looking at it.

Nicotine in vape dosages has positive effects - while smoking markedly increases the risk of (vascular) dementia positive associations in respect of other forms for smokers were identified some time ago. There's a stack of positive studies into the effects of safely prescribed nicotine (usually patches) on working memory and cognition in dementia - and also Parkinson's. Numerous longitudinal and large replication studies are on-going - likewise quite a few pilots trialing it in place of the more risky amphetamine based stimulants for AD/HD have shown positives.

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Silver badge

Re: Regulation is sensible the article is not

"Why do you insist on comparing vaping only to cigarette smoking? That's pure cherry-picking."

Ok then.

People die from falling off horses. Ban horses.

Getting out of bed in the morning can be dangerous. People die doing that every year. Ban beds.

DIY accidents? People die doing that. Ban DIY.

Shall we move on cars and related deaths? No? Thought not.

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Boffin

Re: Regulation is sensible the article is not

>The purpose of an e-cigarette is to introduce a pharmecutical into the body through the lungs.

Ur doin it rong. Depending on your technique, only a very small percentage is likely to be absorbed through the lungs because the particle size of vapour is much larger than that of smoke. The nicotine is much more readily absorbed through the mucous membranes in the mouth and nose; especially the nose, so really the optimised method of vaping is to stick it up your hooter (though I like most vapers find it just a little odd to be doing this in public).

You're right that a lot of the bill is perfectly sensible, but I submit that the regs on bottle and tank volume and concentration are not. We've already heard from one of the MEPs (now a Lord) involved in drafting the EU law admitting to the House that Big Pharma were heavily involved in the process, and this speaks volumes about whom the chosen limits serve. Any bottle I've ever bought has been child-proofed anyway, so I fail to see why volume's a concern; you can do yourself far more harm with a smaller volume of drain-cleaner, and they sell that by the gallon. Same goes for tanks, although even more so as I'm as likely to let children near my e-cig as I was my cigs and lighter. These quantitative limitations serve one purpose only: to make vaping less competitive against traditional NRT.

If I may go anecdotal again (for your benefit as you admit you are not a "vapper"): I smoked heavily for 20 years. Many attempts in that time to quit both with and without conventional NRT products got me absolutely nowhere near that goal. I tried Gen 1 e-cigs when they came on the market, but while promising, they didn't get me there either. (From what I've since read, this may well have been because although I chose 2.4 strength, the delivery was less efficient so the effective dose was much lower.) Late last year I tried again with a modern entry-level system, and within a fortnight I had stopped smoking altogether and didn't miss it. given how entrenched I'd been, I wasn't convinced I really didn't miss it and tried one at Christmas: although it was a "wimpy" budget ciggy compared to the unfiltered rollups I used to smoke, I was too disgusted to finish it.

Would the story have been the same with only 2.0 liquid available? Impossible to say, though I have my doubts. I didn't find the e-cig *more* satisfying (of my cravings) than a cigarette; it simply achieved parity. (The bonuses of smelling better, having more energy and money etc. didn't really kick in until a bit later so they wouldn't have got me there.) And I'm quite certain there are smokers still out there who are hooked harder than I was. If they don't achieve parity, if it's not *as* satisfactory, they won't quit that way and may not at all. That would be a real shame, especially when I know it's only happened so Big Pharma can trouser more cash from the NHS and us with their inferior (for many) solutions.

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Facepalm

Re: Regulation is sensible the article is not

"There will still be a negative imapct on health"

It's a 95% LESS negative im-ap-ct on health.

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Anonymous Coward

This is a nice piece from the BBC on Vaping

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-36338280

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Re: This is a nice piece from the BBC on Vaping

There's also a Horizon episode on this Sunday evening BBC2 for more facts and science on the subject http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b07c6ll4

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Anonymous Coward

I predicted that about a year from when this started..

It was the only logical conclusion to reach after I noticed just how vaping was starting to hammer tobacco (and thus government) profit. The choice of "weapon of suppression" was fairly self evident too: tobacco companies have whole departments dealing with regulation and compliance, whereas the places that turn out the various elements of vaping are typically small setups who can't afford that sort of overhead.

The only surprise here is that it took this long. Expect lots of grey import..

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Joke

Re: I predicted that about a year from when this started..

I predicted the Higgs Boson in 1952 and was proved right. Just look for an unsigned letter, as I didn't want people to know who I was.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: I predicted that about a year from when this started..

Touché, insofar that I could not be bothered to dig up the specific comment in the +10k or so I have made at this site. It would not have proved anything because it would probably have been anonymous anyway :).

I hope you at least agree it was very predictable.

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Enter the merchants of doubt...

Because it's a tactic that's worked so many times before right?

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Bronze badge

E-Cigs are beter for the smoker and the non-smoker, but no, the EUSSR have to stick their noses in act like even bigger assholes. I wish we could burn down all EU buildings with their nany MEPS and unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats inside and reboot democracy !

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Silver badge

Re: "I wish we could burn...reboot democracy."

Democracy does get a real booting from time to time, mainly from people expressing sentiments like yours.

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Anonymous Coward

I wish we could burn down all EU buildings with their nany MEPS and unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats inside and reboot democracy !

"I wish I could burn down" <-> "reboot democracy" - I like the irony.

Unfortunately, they're well ahead of you - those that "vape" no longer carry lighters or matches..

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Silver badge

Its about the money

Apparently the EU regulations were written by pharmaceutical company representatives....there was an article in the press about this a week or so back. Their interest is that vaping is apparently eating into their market for patches and other anti-smoking aids.

If this is true -- and I've no reason to believe not -- then its a very strong argument for ignoring these regulations.....or the EU.

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Re: Its about the money

Pretty much every piece of legislation these days is all about the money. Pharmaceutical and tobacco companies are getting hit in the wallets by people switching to vaping, so they in turn hit the wallets of lawmakers, and presto! Problem solved.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Its about the money

Pharmaceutical and tobacco companies are getting hit in the wallets by people switching to vaping, so they in turn hit the wallets of lawmakers

In the case of smoking it's more direct as the governments have been enthusiastically heaping taxes on smoking. No doubt the loss of that income has prompted support for the industries' "plight"..

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The problem that vaping will always have is that it fails the duck test.

If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, then it's a duck.

Cigalikes look like a cigarette and the vapour looks like smoke, so people just see it as smoking but different slightly. We've been conditioned as a population to see smoking as a very undesirable thing to do and so vaping by virtue of the duck test also gets roped in to the same category no matter what the scientific evidence to the contrary.

I'm a vaper and have been for many years and I've lost count of the amount of people who have come up to me and told me that it's worse than smoking, or it will explode, or I'm killing them by standing in the open air with my vape.

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I have been told all this by lots of people too, but it's not so much because it looks like smoke, rather because they saw on TV or Facebook that it's worse than smoking and some guy had one blow up on him, don'tchaknow?

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Anonymous Coward

last week I was in an incredibly poor area of the world. I was there to climb a mountain. I saw children, drinking dirty water from a polluted rivers, begging for food and alone, having been abandoned or orphaned because of the war torn country they live in. Their lives were incredably hard

Then I come home and find us bickering about Brexit, ECigs, traffic, Boris and that tw*t that seems to be in charge at number 10 and it makes me realise...half the people in the western world don't know they're born.

Life is hard, there is a lot of stuff out there that will kill you, you probably will die a horrible, painful death. Forget all that, instead realise you're luckier than you'll ever know.

For the record, I've vaped for well over a year now, I'm so glad to be free from smelly, tar filled cancer sticks i was soking before.My health is considerably better, I smell better and have slowly reduced my intake Whilst vaping, I can still run a 9 minute mile and climb a mountain well over 5000m.

Where as, if you eat Big Macs and drink beer (nice safe taxable things) you're more likely to die of heart disease or liver failure, but thats ok, because the NHS is coping just fine under the weight of that....

I think it's time I left Europe.

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Next time you're in France...

Those lads next door have a much more relaxed (as only they can) attitude towards vaping.

Most vaping stores can sell you anything you like and because we are in the EU (for now at least) they'll even post it to you.

In the meantime, support your local vaping store. They may have neck beards and too many tattoos, but they are happy to provide a service and it pays for them to buy clothes, food or even put their children through university.

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Silver badge

Re: Next time you're in France...

Most vaping stores can sell you anything you like and because we are in the EU (for now at least) they'll even post it to you.

IIRC, that's also in the TPD: There are tight restrictions on cross-border sales of e-cigs and related products.

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Re: Next time you're in France...

TPD pretty much fucks the french vape industry too.

If we can overturn the law here, that may well cause a domino effect in the EU, and get some sensible regs in that actually follow the science, and are capable of keeping up with the changes in tech.

In 2012 when this was mooted, there was no such thing as temperature control, or sub ohm tanks, or good performing mouth to lung tanks - everything was a bit hacked together.

Now that we have good devices and tech, the effectiveness of these devices have gone through the roof. Last year it was about 2/3rds dual users (ie still smoking) and 1/3 exclusive use (IE ex-smokers).

Now, it's closer to 50/50 and rising, with less and less dual users, and more and more ex-smokers.

TPD is going to be a major problem for this because it's based on when there were less than a million vapers in the UK. Now there's closer to three.....

TPD: "It's shite, get shot".

Steven R

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Vic

Re: Next time you're in France...

IIRC, that's also in the TPD: There are tight restrictions on cross-border sales of e-cigs and related products.

I've heard this a few times.

That would seem to inhibit the free movement of goods, and is thus contrary to the EU's fundamental freedoms[1]. That would appear to be a breach of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.

I wonder if this legislation will end up being struck down for being unlawful?

Vic.

[1] Their words, not mine...

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Holmes

Question

Walking along the path and passing a vaper... is that less bad for me than all of the cars, trucks and busses churning out toxins and particulates?

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The maximum tank size is a measly 2ml, less than half of the typical tank size today of 5ml.

next it will be. You can only buy fags in packs of 10, or you can only have beer in 1/2 pints.

where's the logic? oh, right, more money when forced to buy in smaller quantities...

I never thought i would ever stop smoking. never really wanted to. :) but vaping allows me to cut down the tobacco and my fellow workers are thankful. I use vaping in conjunction with smoking, not as a complete replacement. nothing like a proper smoke in the morning with a cuppa. :D

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Re: The maximum tank size is a measly 2ml, less than half of the typical tank size today of 5ml.

... next it will be. You can only buy fags in packs of 10 ...

Have you read the other half of these regulations which came into force today, covering real cigs?

You can only buy packs of 20 now, packs of 10 can no longer be produced. *

Yep, that's right. The SAFER of the two has a MAXIMUM size and a MAXIMUM strength. The KILLER of the two has a MINIMUM quantity.

When you look at the bigger picture the whole thing stinks of declining tax revenue / big tobacco pressure / pharmaceutical pressure. (tick all that apply).

* Similar to the new vaping regs, cigarette distributors have been given a fixed amount of time to sell off any existing stock of 10-packs. I would bet you a whole week's wages that the tobacco companies gathered sales data covering that amount of time and went crazy producing 10-packs so they had enough stock to sell during that time, whilst complaining about the new cigarette regs and supporting the vaping laws.

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Re: The maximum tank size is a measly 2ml, less than half of the typical tank size today of 5ml.

Actually it's the opposite, they've now banned packs of 10.... pack of idiots.

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Silver badge

Re: The maximum tank size is a measly 2ml, less than half of the typical tank size today of 5ml.

"You can only buy packs of 20 now, packs of 10 can no longer be produced."

Yup and about time too. It's about 4 decades overdue.

The direct intent of this move is to price packs out of the affordability range of schoolkids, which is the same reason that selling individual cigarettes will get a large amount of hurt falling on any shopkeeper who does it from a very great height.

If vaping usage continues to increase in under 25s faster than cig smoking declines you can expect heavier targetting to reduce attractiveness to young people.

FWIW: Thai Red Bull contains a small amount of nicotine (it can be ingested via the gut as well as the lungs). I wonder how much outcry there would be if it was sold here.

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Re: The maximum tank size is a measly 2ml, less than half of the typical tank size today of 5ml.

Oh, so it's under -25s now that you've realised that your claim about youth use is a load of utter shite?

Pull the other one Alan, it's got bells on. Especially if you believe that two kids who would otherwise have bought a ten pack each, won't just club together to buy a 20-deck and split it.

Jesus fucking christ, I did that when I was a kid when we realised that fag for fag, 20-decks were cheaper!

Steven R

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Lady with the perfume, what's your solvent

Stopped cigs Feb. 2010 - faded out of e-cigs 6 months later. Thanks to e-cigs I am better off and healthier.

How dangerous is that?

Conversations with my supplier revealed the solvent was the same as used in many perfumes.

Is that still correct? I don't know, but if my particular e-cig is banned then they should also ban women wearing perfume. I

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Lady with the perfume, what's your solvent

Water and alcohol are both solvents used in perfume.

Neither are major ingredients in vaping juice though.

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Silver badge

The only people who criticise vaping are either

a) Clueless to what it really is

b) Jumping on another bandwagon

c) Losing profit from the practice

The less we understand, the more we think we know...

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Silver badge

1) Vaping should be banned in public. I don't want to smell / inhale your second-hand chemical flavourings.

2) The risk of long-term damage to the lung lining by solvents such as glycerin and propylene glycol is a gamble I wouldn't want to take. I can see a major "degreasing" effect taking place, removing the lungs protective mucus, destabilising the lung leading to partial collapse.

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Silver badge

1) Smoking should be banned in public. I don't want to smell / inhale your second-hand smoke.

2) The risk of long-term damage to the lung lining by nicotine, tar, and carbon monoxide, as well as formaldehyde, ammonia, hydrogen cyanide, arsenic, and DDT is a gamble I wouldn't want to take. Carbon monoxide makes it harder for red blood cells to carry oxygen throughout the body. Tar is a mixture of substances that together form a sticky mass in the lungs.

I think on balance, my version is worse. And besides, you are, yet again, a knower of nothing, yet an expert on everything. You don't have a shred of evidence to back up your claims, so I would put you in both the first and second categories of my previous comment.

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1) There's no evidence to support such harsh legislation, you want legislation against something you find personally annoying. That makes you something of a fascist. Well done!

2) The risk of long term damage from PG/VG is calculated by people who know the science properly to be massively smaller than the known effects of lit tobacco in any case.

If PG is so bad, why is it approved for use in hospital air systems for it's antibacterial values? Or why do they propose it's use it as a carrier for anti-rejection drugs for lung transplants?

Sounds like you're just making things up again, you know, unless you claim to know more than both Public Health England, and the Royal College of Physicians on this subject, which given your previous attempt at sciencing seems unlikely.

Steven R

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Anonymous Coward

1) Exhaling should be banned in public. I don't want to inhale your second-hand carbon dixoide enriched air.

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Oh, and water is a solvent, so presumably in it's vapourised form - you know, steam - it'll also melt yer lungs.

Quick, stop showering!

Or in your case, just don't start.

Steven R

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Good stuff

Steven Raith. I have followed the discussion around vaping and the TPD on the comments pages here very carefully. Thank you for your well informed and eloquent contribution. You have put in a great deal of work to help inform people, and you have done your best to pop a few myths. I have noticed you are slowly losing your rag, and I think that is understandable. But I urge you to carry on the good work and not let a minority of ignorant comentards bait you into angry retorts. Some people have opinions that can not be changed by facts. I would like to think that here on The Register's comments pages, that sub-set would be smaller than many other places, but obviously there is still a proportion of them, here as elsewhere. Don't let it get to you, the majority of us are behind you.

(Oh and; Have we met? In North Yorkshire?)

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Re: Good stuff

Not so much losing my rag, as just getting plain bored of hearing the same, tired, debunked rubbish over, and over, and over, and over. Eventually, if they're not going to bother doing the slightest bit of research, why should I break out my Very Best Manners for them?

Anyway, cheers for the nod.

And yeah, North Yorks. If you've been overtaken by a yellow puma bouncing off the redline (not in the last six months mind) it was probably me.

I used to do roving IT stuff, possibly via that?

Steven R

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Anonymous Coward

>If PG is so bad, why is it approved for use in hospital air systems for it's antibacterial values?

PG has been used as the propellant in asthma inhalers and in nebulisers for many lung treatments since the off - there's well over 50 years of safety data - other medical applications are also legion.

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Yup, here's a summarisation of PGs approval for use in all sorts of inhalation based scenarios by the FDA and EPA, citing the various regulatory bits that cover it. None of these studies have been overturned or deemed as needing updated since they were published. The established science is established, and no-one has felt the need to challenge it as it's very sound and well understood and accepted to be correct.

As for everything else in an e-cig, for bystanders there is naff all to worry about.

Mix that in with the RCP study on e-cigs concluding that they are safe enough, and worth promoting to smokers, one wonders whether all those crying about 'we just don't know' are looking for their information?

I'm just some chump on the internet, and I can find plenty of good peer reviewed research showing minimal harm to users, and negligible interaction (never mind harm) with bystanders, yet the only research I can find that tries to show negative effects from e-cigs all seems to be horribly cherry picked, misrepresented, methodologically broken tat.

Clive Bates, the former Executive Director of ASH, does a wonderful takedown of this issue following the usual anti-harm reduction cabals response to the RCP report. It's really rather devestating.

And that was the best the Doubting Debbies could manage, for goodness sakes.

Sadly, the Doubting Debbies have the ear of Public Health orgs around the world - see Australia recently deciding to treat ecigs as tobacco products. Despite them containing no tobacco. The 'flat earthers' referred to by Clive were involved in the (closed doors, no public consultation) guidance on that decision.

One of the leading lights in their little movement doesn't even seem to realise that nicotine isn't a carcinogen.

He backpedalled by claiming that IARC have nicotine and potential carcinogenicity of it on their 'priorities to review' list, but it's been there for the last two years, no-one else has managed to find a link to it in humans, ever, and just because it's up for review doesn't mean anything's gonna change in that respect because that's not how science works, not matter how Mr Chapman tries to frame it.

As I have mentioned elsewhere, there are chunks of public health that are just utterly, utterly broken at the moment, and the sooner those pieces get chucked out, the better it'll be for everyone.

Steven R

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Silver badge

"One of the leading lights in their little movement doesn't even seem to realise that nicotine isn't a carcinogen."

No, but it's an extremely potent neurotoxin with the potential to kill someone in a few minutes if misused. Cancers usually take longer to do that.

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