Minister defends plan to ban disposable vapes – ‘You’re making the world worse’

Secretary of State Ossian Smyth has defended the proposed ban on single-use vaporizers, saying they are “very wasteful” and making the world “a worse place”.

The Circular Economy Minister said a public consultation will be carried out before a ban on the disposal of nicotine products is finalized, but it could be introduced under the EU’s Single-Use Plastics Directive.

The Green TD said that the popularity of disposable vapes has skyrocketed over the past two years and a recent study found that “50 percent of young people who vape have opted for disposable vapes”.

“This product, which contains lithium-ion batteries and electronics and so on, is only used for a very short period of time and then thrown away and that’s just very wasteful,” he said.

“I went to Electric Picnic earlier this year, if you went to a summer festival you would have seen these very brightly colored tubes all over the floor. So there’s an innovation that I think makes the world a worse place.”


Minister of State Ossian Smyth. Photo: Gareth Chaney

Speaking of RTÉ Tomorrow Ireland Minister Smyth defended the merits of the ban as people could still buy disposable vapes online.

He said they’ve become the “default option,” especially for younger people, because they’re “half the price” of a pack of cigarettes.

However, he argued that consumers would prefer to buy a regulated product in a store rather than buying disposable vapes online.

“I think people want government assurances when they buy a vape product and put it in their lungs that this is something that’s certified, that they know the amount of nicotine that’s in them, but you would.” not knowing they just bought some random product on the internet and started using it,” he said.

Minister Smyth said “we don’t really have a problem” with people using reusable vapes and there is more legislation coming for nicotine products.

“And I think that’s going to include rules about how to regulate that better, how to decide at what age to buy it, what strengths should be in it,” he added.

Secretary Smyth described it as “priority legislation” for the government and said it “will be tackled this calendar year” and “won’t take years to implement”.

Meanwhile, Cabinet is receiving proposals to introduce a temporary ban on evictions, which Mr Smyth said he would support.

“I think a temporary ban on evictions is the right thing to do and I know Secretary O’Brien called a meeting of the various stakeholders at three o’clock this afternoon … and I think they’re going to sit down with the industry and to see how best to enforce that,” he added. Minister defends plan to ban disposable vapes – ‘You’re making the world worse’

Fry Electronics Team

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