San Francisco breaks its e-cigarette habit

Photo: Vaping360 via Flickr (CC BY 2.0) [Edited]

San Francisco-based Juul and other e-cigarette companies were given a swift kick in the stones today by the Golden Gate City as San Francisco became the first city in the United States to ban the sale of electronic cigarettes within its borders.

From The New York Times:

“We’ve worked for decades to decrease tobacco usage and try to end nicotine addiction,” said Shamann Walton, a member of the board of supervisors and a co-author of the bill, which will go into effect 30 days after it is signed by the mayor. “Now you have this device loaded with nicotine and chemicals that’s drawing people to addiction. We need to keep it out of the hands of young people.”

Passage of the bill was praised by anti-tobacco advocates and the American Heart Association, among other health organizations.

But the bill also has many critics, including researchers who say they worry that a blanket ban on e-cigarettes could harm the wider goals of anti-tobacco efforts by eliminating what experts consider a safer alternative to conventional cigarettes.

While they might explode in your face, e-cigarettes present a significantly lower toxin level per puff than sucking on a conventional coffin nail does.

The New York Times points out this fact, relating that the ban can be seen as knee-jerk appeasement to voters who are worried their kids could get hooked on nicotine... even though cigarettes will still be available in the city at every corner store.

If you're looking to stock up before the ban take effect, you'll have six months to do it as the city of San Francisco is giving businesses within its borders half a year to get rid of their current stock.

Oh, and if you're planning on opening an e-cigarette company (I mean, who hasn't dreamed of that?) you might want to look for a friendlier town: San Francisco's board of supervisors passed a second bill this stating that it would be illegal to open an e-cig company on city-owned land.

Image via Wikipedia Commons