Vapers around the world were taken by surprise when a government finally got behind electronic cigarettes, with BK Ainsworth from CASAA stating:
‘We were wowed when we saw it. after over 3 years of every government agency all of the world condemning them, we almost passed out.’
Happily, for UK vapers, that government was the British one.
The robust support comes from the government’s nudge unit, set up after the book Nudge suggested ways to steer rather than force people towards decisions which would be beneficial to them.
And for smokers, the unit decided, it would be beneficial to have smokeless (i.e. electronic) cigarettes on sale, next to tobacco cigarettes, and at a lower price than tobacco cigarettes.
A canon of behaviour change is that it is much easier to substitute a similar behaviour than to extinguish an entrenched habit (an example was the rapid switch from leaded to unleaded fuel). If alternative and safe nicotine products can be developed which are attractive enough to substitute people away from traditional cigarettes, they could have the potential to save 10,000s of lives a year.’
Not only did the British gov endorse e-cigarettes, they appeared to criticise governments who have banned the device:
… experts have advised the UK government that the nicotine contained in some new, smoke-free cigarettes is no more harmful than caffeine in coffee. A Cabinet Office source said: ‘A lot of countries are moving to ban this stuff; we think that’s a mistake.’
It couldn’t be better news for e-cigarette users, with the Guardian article we linked to above finishing with the quote:
There’s no doubt it [the electronic cigarette] can save many lives and hundreds of millions of pounds.