NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Tweaking E-Cigarette Regulations

July 7, 2014

According to Time, the White House has weakened proposed regulations for electronic cigarettes. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) proposed e-cigarette regulations in April. The FDA's proposal:

  • Banned the sale of e-cigarettes to minors.
  • Required that e-cigarette makers register a list of their ingredients.
  • Banned "non-face-to-face" sales.

The ban on non-face-to-face sales would have prohibited vending machine purchases, but it could also have prevented online sales. According to Reuters, the White House's Office of Management and Budget, which analyzes the economic impact of regulations, edited the clause that could have banned online sales, rewording it to refer specifically to vending machines.

Some are concerned that e-cigarettes are dangerous. According to a report in Science News Magazine, e-cigarette vapors may make it difficult to kill antibiotic-resistant bacteria. In one experiment, when a researcher with the VA San Diego Healthcare System exposed MRSA (Staphylococcus aureus) to e-cigarette vapors, the MRSA became harder to kill.

Source: Noah Rayman, "White House Softens Proposed E-Cigarette Regulations," Time, June 26, 2014; Janet Raloff, "Health risks of e-cigarettes emerge," Science News Magazine, June 28, 2014. 


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