An article published by National Geographic has come out in support of electronic cigarettes, saying that as well as carrying fewer risks to smokers, e cigarettes are much less harmful to the environment.
The article ‘Cigarettes vs. E-cigarettes : Which is Less Harmful’ discusses how cigarette butts, which are still regularly discarded by smokers on pavements and out of car windows, cause not only an unsightly litter problem, but also form a toxic hazard to the environment.
The article explains how cigarette butts can take up to ten years to decompose and can leach chemicals including tar and nicotine, which if washed into the sea or coming into contact with other plant or animal life, can be very harmful. The article’s author, Brian Clark Howard, comments on how electronic cigarettes could help to reduce this problem due to their re-usable nature.
In addition to the re-usable and therefore eco-friendly properties of electronic cigarettes, the other environmental benefit they have over conventional cigarettes is the exhaled ‘smoke’. Not only does the exhaled ‘smoke’ from e-cigs not have the same lingering smell associated with smoking, the vapour exhaled also poses much less of a health risk to anyone inhaling it as ‘passive smoke’.
This is because the exhaled vapour from electronic cigarettes is not chemical-ridden like that from conventional cigarettes, but is actually only water vapour; produced as a by-product of the process of heating the nicotine in the e-cig.
Find out more information about how ecigarettes work