Vaping indoors is “unlikely” to pose any risk to bystanders, according to a research paper carried out by three educational institutions.
Presented at the fourth Workplace and Indoor Aerosols conference in Barcelona, the paper is the first of its kind to show that exhaled e-cigarette particles evaporate within a matter of seconds.
The study was carried out to determine how vaping would affect air quality indoors with the results implying a risk or lack thereof to bystanders and non-vapers.
The research team found there was no substantial impact on the room’s air quality when vapor from closed system e-cigarettes was exhaled. Indeed, the results were the same when comparing rooms with and without ventilation systems.
“This is an important study, but it is one of the first to assess the actual exposure to ‘secondhand’ vapor from e-cigarette use in a realistic situation. The important finding is that although exhaled e-cigarette aerosol does contain a high concentration of particulates, the aerosol dissipates within seconds, resulting in aerosol levels dropping to background levels,” Dr. Michael Siegel, professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences at Boston University School of Public Health, told The Daily Caller News Foundation in an emailed statement.
“This means that the particulate matter does not accumulate, unlike tobacco smoke, which we know lingers in the air causing the concentration to build up over time. The importance of this is that a non-vaper’s exposure to the aerosol particles appears to be fleeting, lasting only a few seconds per puff of the vaper. This study adds to the evidence that vaping poses minimal risks to exposed bystanders.”
E-cigarettes themselves are around 95 percent safer than conventional tobacco cigarettes, according to Public Health England.
The research was spearheaded by Fontem Ventures, which owns two e-cigarette brands but the study was carried out by the independent Kaunas University of Technology in Lithuania, EMPA Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology and ETH Zurich the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology.
“This also tells us how fundamentally different exhaled e-cigarette particles are compared to those emitted by smoking conventional cigarettes, the latter of which are reported to linger in the air for long periods of time. By contrast, no accumulation of particles was registered in the room following e-cigarette use,” said Dr. Grant O’Connell, Vice President of Corporate and Regulatory Affairs, Fontem Ventures.
“This initial data supports the conclusions of Public Health England, the Chartered Institute for Environmental Health, Cancer Research UK and others that vaping indoors is unlikely to pose an air quality issue to bystanders and non-vapers,” added Marc Michelsen, Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs and Communications at Fontem.