During former President Barack Obama’s eight-year reign, his regulation-loving administration sought to impose draconian rules on e-cigarettes, a class of devices that simulate the experience of smoking by vaporizing a nicotine-based liquid.
Set to take effect in 2018, the regulations pursued by Obama’s Food and Drug Administration would have devastated the electronic cigarette industry, effectively banning up to 99 percent of e-cigs being sold in the United States, as noted by Reason Foundation fellow Brian Brian Fojtik in a recent op-ed for National Review.
Enter current FDA Administrator Scott Gottlieb, who Fojtik reported has “extended the application deadline for vapor companies from 2018 to 2022” and “also indicated that the FDA would reconsider the guidelines as written.”
This announcement means the world to America’s millions of e-cigarette users, including your humble correspondent, who permanently quit smoking tobacco cigarettes roughly half a decade ago thanks to these very devices.
While more research needs to be conducted on the potential risks of e-cigarettes, one thing remains clear: They pose far fewer risks to one’s health than tobacco cigarettes, according to a study published earlier this year.
“Our study shows that bodily level exposure to established and important smoking-related carcinogens and toxicants is reduced by between 56 percent to 97 percent in long-term e-cigarette users who have stopped smoking completely, compared with tobacco cigarette smokers,” researcher Lion Shahab said in February, according to CBS News.
Another study published last year found that the consumption of e-cigarettes, which are being used by more and more Americans to quit smoking tobacco cigarettes, could lead to a stunning 21 percent drop in deaths from smoking-related illnesses in those born after 1997.
Why? Because as Fojtik noted, “People smoke for the nicotine but die from the tar and carbon monoxide produced by combustion.”
And unlike the Obama administration’s rhetoric about e-cigarettes, this isn’t non-scientific fear-mongering. It’s science, stupid.
It’s also common sense. Unlike conventional cigarettes, which use combustion to heat tobacco into a carcinogenic smoke, e-cigarettes employ concentrated heat to transform a nicotine-based liquid into a vapor that neither stinks nor harms bystanders.