The World Health Organization (WHO) is sounding the alarm about the use of e-cigarettes and other electronic devices for the consumption of the addictive substance nicotine. The organization calls on governments to tighten sales regulations. WHO’s position on e-cigarettes: “Electronic nicotine devices need to be better regulated”.
The sale of e-cigarettes is increasingly aimed at young people, with special flavors and fashionable packaging. According to a report published by the WHO on Tuesday, underage users later reach for regular cigarettes two to three times more often than the other young people.
According to the UN agency, thousands of different types of e-cigarettes and e-liquids (liquids) are sold globally. Global revenue increased from approximately $2.8 billion to $15 billion between 2014 and 2019.
The long-term consequences of e-cigarette use are not yet clear, the report said. “But there is growing evidence that these products are not harmless.” Some liquids contain twice as much nicotine as regular cigarettes. Studies have shown that its use can lead to cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, and lung problems.
Even in products marketed as nicotine-free, the addictive substance is often found, the data shows. The WHO, therefore, calls on governments to better regulate the sale of e-cigarettes.
“Electronic nicotine devices need to be better regulated,” said WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. “If they are not banned, authorities must better protect children, young people, and other target groups from the harmful effects of such devices.”
“The goal of the tobacco companies is clear,” said Michael Bloomberg. “They want to commit a new generation. We can’t let that happen.” Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York, is the founder of Bloomberg Philanthropies, the charity that sponsored the report.