Washington D.C.—Today, U.S. Representative Duncan Hunter introduced the Cigarette Smoking Reduction and Electronic Vapor Alternatives Act, legislation creating a new regulatory framework for vaping products that no longer subjects them to controls imposed under the Tobacco Control Act. The legislation underscores the uniqueness of vaping technology and products, and advances vaping as a widely recognized life-saving alternative to traditional tobacco use.
“This bill is the way forward for smokers who want to quit smoking and vapers who enjoy vaping,” said Representative Hunter. “No less important, this bill will set the vaping industry on a solid path for decades to come and require consideration of the harm reduction benefits associated with vaping.
“The idea that vaping should be viewed and regulated no different than tobacco ignores the fact that countless Americans are turning to this one alternative to reduce their urge to smoke cigarettes or quit once and for all. It’s also a fact that small businesses that sell vaping products will experience severe hardship under the existing regulatory structure and desperately need the relief and clarity that this legislation provides.
“I started smoking when I was younger and quit. In Iraq and Afghanistan, as a U.S. Marine, I picked up the habit again. Vaping is what helped me to stop smoking and I know from the experiences of so many others that I’m not alone. It’s time that vaping is embraced and accepted for the benefits its offers—among them harm reduction.”
The Cigarette Smoking Reduction and Electronic Vapor Alternatives Act was prompted in response to a Food and Drug Administration (FDA) deeming rule that extended the FDA’s regulatory authority to a variety of tobacco products, including personal electronic vaping devices and e-liquids. Under new regulations, the multi-billion dollar vaping industry, most of which are small businesses, will be decimated. Current and future vaping products will have to go through a burdensome and expensive approval process—effectively denying the availability of products.
Specifically, the Cigarette Smoking Reduction and Electronic Vapor Alternatives Act separates personal electronic vaping devices and e-liquids from the FDA deeming regulation. Under the legislation, E-liquids would be regulated by the FDA using commonly accepted industry manufacturing standards. The bill also establishes standards for vaping hardware and batteries to protect consumers. One year after enactment, all e-liquids and vaping hardware must conform to manufacturing standards within the bill.
The legislation also requires the FDA to consider harm reduction within the scope of the Tobacco Control Act.