Vaping and the Environment - How Vaping Can Be Eco-Friendly?
The first quarter of the 21st century is almost ending and everyone is trying to be eco-friendly in whatever they do. Whilst to some people it’s about cutting down the production of poisonous gases, to the majority is about reducing plastic wastes. Today, the vast majority of vape products come with some parts manufactured from plastic, only a few brands and particularly the industry leaders use glass. But what does this mean to the environment? What does the future of our beaches, rivers, oceans, and soils hold? Are there ways of cutting down these plastic wastes we encounter in vaping? These questions and alike are well-answered in this post.
How eco-friendly is vaping?
Now, can we say vape products have the same impact on the environment as regular cigarettes do? Are you informed that cigarette butts are the leading plastic polluter in the world? It’s been established that vapes and associated products are a way more eco-friendly substitute to combustible cigarettes (not to mention they are far healthier and more economical)! Also, close to two-thirds of cigarette filters consumed annually are carelessly discarded to the environment without proper disposal. Butts do not just smell nauseating, they also form one of the major types of pollution. Every year, about 4.5 trillion pieces of these non-biodegradable components are disposed into water bodies, placing them in the same class of pollutants with plastic bags, bottles, and straws. These butts are not paper-made, the biggest share is actually manufactured from cellulose acetate, an artificial plastic that takes tens of years to decay. So at the time of writing this post, the butts in the oceans could have been disposed of back in 2012.
What’s more saddening is that unlike plastic debris from vape products, cigarette wastes contain all the poisonous chemicals contained in cigarette smoke. These toxins range from formaldehyde, arsenic, polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), copper, nicotine, and cadmium among others. These chemicals are leached into natural systems from when they are stubbed out. This tells you how endangered are our soils and water resources by tobacco consumption. The basic facts show that smoking-associated debris accounts for close to one-third of all wastes found in rivers, streams, and seas. They:
- Hamper plant growth
- Pollute water bodies, waterways and harm sea life
- Harm land animals like birds that feed on littered debris
We could proceed and discuss how millions of dollars are being spent every year (and to a greater extent failing) to restore our environment. But bottom line: anyone who chooses to switch from regular cigarettes to vapes makes a very positive choice for the sake of the environment.
Moreover, large tracks of land are deforested to grow tobacco and this negatively affects the environment in terms of soil erosion, land degradation, loss of biodiversity, increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, and water pollution among others. Despite all these, though, vapes aren’t perfect either. We should put more effort to make sure our consumption doesn’t harm the environment.
How to Become an Eco-Friendly Vaper
The industry is impeded by poorly-formulated legislation like the one that directs the use of 10-ml plastic vape bottles. Truly, this’s environmentally mutilating in itself as it results in the production of a sheer number of such bottles. But there are also vape batteries and disposables to consider. Luckily, there’re numerous measures we as individuals should follow to reduce our mess on the environment. More interestingly, these actions will help us save some money. They are:
1. Choose re-usable vapes
One thing you should do to minimize damages to ecosystems is to reduce your engagement with disposable vapes. Now, essential facts reveal that there is immense popularity of disposables from the vaping community. Should one find themselves caught with a cracked clearomizer, dead battery, or dry tank, a disposable can be a convenient way to deal with their nicotine cravings until they can sort out their usual vape. But let’s not bury our heads in the sand, these disposables feature lithium-ion batteries which are designed to survive at least 300 times. But if you vape with a disposable vape, you can only discard it once the tank dries. If all vapers were to use disposable vapes, you would see billions of vape batteries being produced and transported around the globe, and later discarded each year. This would result in excessive lithium exploration and mining – which would be disastrous to the environment. Besides, disposable vapes are hard to recycle as they come with a battery and vape juice in the same unit.
Although it’s known that consumer demands ultimately drive the trend in any industry, vapers can play a huge role to combat the impact of disposable on the ecosystems. This can be achieved by being mindful of the vapes they choose. For everyone who has the environment at heart, they should consider going for rechargeable vapes. Apart from helping conserve the environment, ultimately, they’ll also save themselves huge sums of money.
At the moment, industrial plastic dross is a great environmental threat. One of the critical things that you can do even at your personal level is to recycle/re-use your plastic waste. For instance, you can re-use plastic shopping bags to store stuff at home. Of course, you can recycle paper, and metallic containers, but these materials aren’t as detrimental to the environment like plastic. While paper takes a few days to months to decay, metal takes a few years to rust. Vapes and vape batteries aren’t different. Of course, they are built from plastic, metal, glass, and other material. More importantly, they are recyclable. Nonetheless, the majority of these devices aren’t recycled but go to black waste. Luckily, there’re several methods of disposing of them in an eco-friendly way. One of them is to take them back to the vendor, and the seller sends them for recycling. The second one is to drop them off at recycling centres. You can search online to find the nearest centre in your neighbourhood. To recycle your old vape and parts, follow these steps:
- Disassemble your vape into parts – unscrew the components: battery, coil, reservoir, etc.
- Wash out the reservoir so that there’s no vape juice residue
- Recycle the battery, paper, metallic, plastic, and glass components in the appropriate recycle bins.
The dismantling process requires some degree of effort. Vapers who aren’t willing to go through all that can follow recycling programmes offered by vape manufacturers. They can save their old e-cigs and send them to one of the companies. They may even get some goodies in return.
3. Go for refillable tanks
Cig-a-like vapes and pre-filled pods/cartridges that feature fixed heating coils are superbly user-friendly. They are rightful choices for vapers who maybe are discouraged by modern vapes as there’s no topping up or coil swapping needed. But truly speaking these advanced refillable tanks do not require rocket science to master. By glance, you could contemplate all you need is to just twist the cap and it shows you the refilling hole, and do what’s necessary. So you can comfortably choose a vape that comes with replaceable coils or tanks/pods. Then once the coil dies, all you need is to swap it with a new one. This will not only reduce the quantity of non-biodegradable material (glass, plastic, or metal) used to manufacture these devices but also save you some pounds you would have spent buying new tanks.
4. Go for eco-friendly brands
Have you contemplated writing to your favorite brand asking them if they comply with eco-friendly policies? If you haven’t, then consider doing it; it comes with some benefits:
- If the company is already abiding by environmentally ethical policies, then you should consider it as a business that has value for its customers.
- If the company hasn’t yet taken steps to reduce environmental degradation then you should be worried about buying its products.
That said, it’s a noble idea to deal with brands that embrace eco-friendly practices. Wotofo is leading here. Besides placing its products in recyclable packaging, its modern products feature 100 percent bio-degradable filter tips. The company supports environmentally friendly policies and it’s conscious about its consumption of electricity, manufacturing as well as distribution practices. This is a brand you can trust with your partnership as it complies with an eco-friendly blueprint in the production of their devices.
5. Reduce your power consumption
The old-day methods of energy production used vast amounts of fossil fuels that are renowned for emitting carbon gases. These gases are disastrous to the environment and contribute to climate change. That said, we should be very conscious of how we consume energy and save as many powers as we can. This will not only preserve energy but will increase your battery life and prevent damages caused by overcharging.
Consequently, you can conserve the environment by minimizing the power used in your e-cig. Firstly, it’s a great idea to switch off your vape when it is not in use. It’s also a precaution as it prevents you and the coil from getting burnt should it be accidentally fired while inside the pocket. Although big clouds are pleasurable, if you decide to go for a mouth-to-lung vape rather than a direct-to-lung vape, you will both minimize your power consumption and save some pounds for vape juice and replacement coils.
- Choose higher strength vape juice
Some vapers go for low strength vape juice because they fear consuming too much nicotine. And this could be founded on myths that too much nicotine causes smoking diseases or they underestimate the quantity of nicotine required to treat their cravings. But consuming low-strength vape juice leads to too much vaping as vapers try to compensate for the “hunger.” Ultimately, they end up using too much power and blowing a lot of vapour.
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7. Discard unwanted vape juice properly
What do you do with expired vape juice or after realizing the one you just bought doesn’t meet your expectations? Do you throw it anyhow? You shouldn’t! It poses a serious threat to the ecosystem and wildlife when these wastes get out there. Don’t mistake the vape bottles for normal wastes. Discard them appropriately. But the saying “one man’s meat is another man’s poison” may apply; first, find if any of your mates or family would want to use the vape juice. If not, then don’t feel guilty to discard it. Also, you may consider taking/sending your vape juice to the vape juice disposal site. Alternatively, pour the juice into a pervious matter like sawdust or cat litter, put it into a biodegradable carrying bag, and discard it with normal junk.
8. Reduce your carbon footprint
Whether you’re based in Europe, America, Asia, or Africa, you should consider buying vaping supplies built by Wotofo. This will minimize your carbon footprint, benefit the ecosystem around you, and ultimately the earth as a whole. Not only is Wotofo a producer of premium vape juice, but is also working tirelessly to become a carbon-free vapour company. The company is constantly seeking better ways to improve its productions like using purely recyclable materials, dealing with an absolutely traceable supply chain. The company is delighted to become one of the leading carbon-positive providers of vaping products all over the world.
What should policymakers do?
The Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) regulations effected on May 20th, 2017 stated that bottles of nicotine-based vape juice must not exceed 10-ml. Some industrialists have argued that the policy was not based on scientific calculation. There is no consistent policy on whether vape bottles should be recyclable. But even without such regulations in place, some suppliers are using recyclable vape bottles as a way to make vaping eco-friendly. Another way to reduce the impact of plastic on the ecosystem is to enlarge the size of vape bottles. It reduces the number of plastic bottles produced and later disposed of after use. Increasing the maximum size a vape bottle can hold is a win for the environment.
Apart from having an enormous health benefit, vaping is a saver to your pocket. Compared to cigarette users, vapers live a healthier life, exercise better, and have greater moments of socializing. But with the continued environmental changes, it’s worth taking appropriate steps to reduce our vape footprint.