China, U.S. Mull Bans on Vaping Products as Death Toll Rises
26 Sep 2019
On Tuesday, China's national news agency said that China is planning to implement controls on tobacco liquids and e-cigarette additives as concerns about deaths and diseases caused by e-cigarettes are growing.
The China news service quoted an unnamed source from the National Tobacco Monopoly Administration as saying that the regulations to be issued as early as next month will also cover e-cigarette equipment and packaging.
In the midst of an outbreak of lung illness in the US linked to vaping products, Donald Trump earlier this month said that his administration is planning to propose a ban on e-cigarette liquid flavors, Fox News published.
"...follow the CDC recommendation to not use e-cigarettes or other vaping devices while this investigation is ongoing."
The United States is currently facing a multi-state outbreak of lung injury associated with vaping, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Today, CNN reported on two new deaths, bringing the total to eleven that have been identified as part of this outbreak -- two in California, two in Kansas, and one each in Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Missouri, and Oregon. As of last week, at least 530 cases of lung injury associated with the use of e-cigarettes or vaping products have been reported to the CDC.
A specific cause of the outbreak remains unknown, but all reported cases of lung injury have a history of e-cigarette use or vaping. According to the CDC, most patients have reported a history of using e-cigarette products containing THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, the psychoactive substance in cannabis. Many patients have reported using THC and nicotine. Some have reported the use of e-cigarette products containing only nicotine.
"San Francisco became the first US city to ban the sale of e-cigarettes"
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp and Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Kathleen Toomey on Wednesday urged people to follow the CDC recommendation to not use e-cigarettes or other vaping devices while this investigation is ongoing.
"Without knowing the specific cause of the vaping-associated illness, discontinuing use of e-cigarettes and vaping devices is the best prevention against becoming ill," according to a press release from the department.
In June of this year, San Francisco became the first US city to ban the sale of e-cigarettes.
The US state of Michigan became the first state to ban sales of flavored e-cigarettes this month; albeit by executive order, which will be in place for six months unless extended or made into law.
Also this month, India banned the sale of e-cigarettes, and the New York State government banned the sale of flavored e-cigarettes.
According to China News Service, in 2018, Chinese e-cigarette industry enterprises invested at least 1 billion yuan ($140 million), and 35 deals were reached in the first half of the year. In August 2018, China banned the sale of electronic cigarettes to people under the age of 18.
New Tobacco Regulations (including vaping) to Take Effect October 1st
In June of this year, Shenzhen added e-smoking to Tobacco Control Regulations, and now bans vaping indoors and in many outdoor public places. The law is to take effect this October 1st, 2019. Highlights of the new regulations (which now include vaping) are:
Designating bus stops, subway stops, and densely populated outdoor areas as "no smoking" zones;
Banning smoking within five meters of public transport entrances and exits, ticket purchasing areas, and waiting areas;
Fining smokers in non-smoking areas 50-500 rmb, to be collected on-the-spot; and
Banning the sale of tobacco products within 50 meters of a school.
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