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SCHEER Ignorance

The European Commission and its Scientific Committee on Health, Environmental and Emerging Risks has published its preliminary opinion on vaping

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The European Commission and its Scientific Committee on Health, Environmental and Emerging Risks (SCHEER) has published its “preliminary opinion on electronic cigarettes” – and it isn’t very good. The Committee has been quite unfair in the past and the latest document does little to correct this position.

The main purpose of this work, according to SCHEER, “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”.

What this means is that their findings and opinions will have a direct impact on TPD3, and in turn on smokers and vapers across Europe in the years to come.

It says it considered, “the most recent and up-to-date scientific evidence and technical developments and, as appropriate, the existing provisions concerning e-cigarettes under the TPD, and the evolution of new products on the market.” In truth, it appears to have been selective and attached too much importance to the findings of certain studies that would better belong in a bin.

It concluded:

  • The evidence for risks of local irritative damage to the respiratory tract is moderate for heavy users not to be excluded for average and light users
  • The evidence for risks of long-term systemic effects on the cardiovascular system is strong
  • The evidence for risks of carcinogenicity of the respiratory tract is weak to moderate
  • The evidence for risks of poisoning and injuries due to burns and explosion is strong
  • There is no evidence that flavourings pose health risks but may enhance attractiveness
  • They think there is moderate evidence that second-hand vaping exists, poses a threat to bystanders and can be carcinogenic to them
  • The committee thinks there is strong evidence that vaping is a gateway to tobacco use, especially in youth
  • It says there is weak evidence to support the idea that vaping works as a quit smoking tool

Some might wonder how any self-respecting scientist could possibly reach conclusions such as these. The answer is that, like last week’s article on the World Health Organization [link], they include work by the likes of the exceptionally limited David Bareham, the rabidly idiotic Jessica Barrington-Trimis, and the scientific fraud Stanton Glantz.

It is as if someone looked at all the published papers on the shape of the earth and concluded that as only 10 said it was round and the rest stated the opposite that the evidence is strong for the earth to be flat.

Interested scientists have been invited to submit their comments on the evidence.

Related:

  • SCHEER Report – [link]­­
  • The Scientific Committee on Health, Environmental and Emerging Risks – [link]
Dave Cross avatar

Dave Cross

Journalist at POTV
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Dave is a freelance writer; with articles on music, motorbikes, football, pop-science, vaping and tobacco harm reduction in Sounds, Melody Maker, UBG, AWoL, Bike, When Saturday Comes, Vape News Magazine, and syndicated across the Johnston Press group. He was published in an anthology of “Greatest Football Writing”, but still believes this was a mistake. Dave contributes sketches to comedy shows and used to co-host a radio sketch show. He’s worked with numerous vape companies to develop content for their websites.

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