Today, following a request from the European Commission, the Scientific Committee on Health, Environmental and Emerging Risks (SCHEER) provided a preliminary Opinion on electronic cigarettes.
Interested parties are invited to submit their comments on the scientific evidence online until 26 October 2020.
The main purpose of the scientific opinion is to assist the Commission in assessing the most recent scientific and technical information on e-cigarettes. Findings presented in the scientific opinion will feed into the Commission’s reporting obligations under Article 28 of the Tobacco Products Directive (TPD), and will also help the Commission in assessing the potential need for legislative amendments under the Directive or other regulatory/enforcement measures. The assessment includes and addresses the role of e-cigarettes, looking into potential impacts on the EU context, in relation to:
- their use and adverse health effects (i.e.; short- and long-term effects), risks associated with their technical design and chemical composition (e.g.; number and levels of toxicants) and with the existing EU regulatory framework (e.g. nicotine concentration and limits);
- their role as a gateway to smoking/the initiation of smoking (particularly focusing on young people) and
- their role in cessation of traditional tobacco smoking.
While drawing-up the scientific opinion, the committee takes into consideration the most recent and up-to-date scientific evidence and technical developments and, as appropriate, the existing provisions concerning e-cigarettes under the TPD (in particular Article 20(3)), and the evolution of new products on the market. The scientific opinion addresses considerations relevant both at individual level and at population level, from a public health perspective.