Beginning in January, Australia will prohibit the importation of disposable vapes in an effort to reduce the prevalence of nicotine addiction among children.
At the same time, there is a broader movement to fully eliminate vaping for recreational purposes.
A “new generation of nicotine dependency” has been produced, according to Australia’s health minister, as a result of vaping, which has been pushed as a method to stop smoking.
Vapes, also known as electronic cigarettes, are electronic cigarettes that are powered by lithium batteries and typically contain cartridges that are loaded with liquids that contain nicotine, artificial flavorings, and a variety of other compounds.
Since the year 2021, it has been against the law for any individual in Australia to acquire or import electronic cigarettes or nicotine vapes without a prescription from a medical professional. However, despite these limits, the rates of addiction have continued to dramatically increase.
In the beginning of this year, a study conducted by the University of Sydney discovered that more than twenty-five percent of adolescents between the ages of 14 and 17 had tried vaping. Additionally, a study conducted by the Cancer Council charity in Australia discovered that nine out of ten adolescents in the same age group found it simple to obtain nicotine vapes.
“All Australian governments are committed to working together to stop the disturbing growth in vaping among our young people,” said Mark Butler, the federal health minister who is driving the charge to have vaping banned.
In May, the government of Australia made it clear that it intended to eliminate the use of single-use vapes, but up until this point, it had not specified any specific date for completion of this process.
According to Mr. Butler, the import restriction on disposable vapes will begin by the first of the year, and by the month of March, refillable vapes that are not intended for therapeutic use will also be prohibited from entering the nation.
Additionally, importers and manufacturers who offer therapeutic vapes will be required to comply with more stringent government regulations about the flavors, nicotine levels, and packaging of their goods.
Research conducted at Johns Hopkins University has established a connection between the practice and asthma and chronic lung illness.
And researchers in Australia who have investigated the liquids that are used in vapes have issued a warning that these liquids contain “a suite of chemicals” that are known to have an effect on the health of the lungs.
The announcement made by Australia comes just a few days after the government of New Zealand abandoned its world-leading smoking ban in order to achieve its goal of reducing taxes.