Beginning today, e-cigarettes will be treated the same as tobacco in B.C.
New regulations mean vaping in no longer permitted in workplaces, or public spaces such as beaches or parks. They will also not be allowed to be used in a vehicle when someone under 16 years old is present.
The B.C. Government says the Tobacco and Vapour Products Control Act is designed to protect youth from the unknown effects of e-cigarette vapour and from becoming addicted to nicotine.
The change in the rules will also impact the way that vapes are sold and advertised. Retailers are now required to check that e-cigarettes are sold only to adults aged 19 years and older, and to ensure that no retail displays or advertising are seen by youth.
The new laws have been implemented to help curb the growing use of e-cigarettes by young people in BC. According to the provincial government, e-cigarette use is highest among young people with one in five youth in Canada having tried an e-cigarette.
The government says progress has been made in reducing tobacco prevalence in the province and British Columbia continues to have the lowest smoking rate in Canada, at approximately 15.3%.
Since the B.C. Smoking Cessation Program began in 2011, the province has invested more than $51.5 million into the program and more than 234,000 British Columbians have used the program to try to quit.