Harm Reduction or Humbug?
The European Commission has recently launched several initiatives that will make safer nicotine products less appealing to smokers. The Commission’s Scientific Committee on Health, Environmental and Emerging Risks (SCHEER) recently published an opinion which downplayed strong evidence showing that e-cigarettes are a gateway from smoking for millions of people, and amplified speculation about hypothetical risks. Shortly afterwards, a draft of Europe’s Beating Cancer (BECA) plan recommended a full ban on e-cigarette flavours and bans on vaping indoors (and even outdoors). Making vaping less accessible and less appealing will have consequences that run directly counter to the Commission’s stated objectives.
What are the most counterproductive policies expressed by the SCHEER committee and the BECA plan? How can evidence-based policy making be put back on the agenda? Can free market liberals endorse any kind of regulation that curbs the freedom of choice of consumers? Join our panel of experts to discuss!