E-cigarette ban for Los Angeles

E-cigarette Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Many smokers have moved to e-cigarettes in a bid to stop smoking

Los Angeles City Council has voted to ban the use of electronic cigarettes in the city's restaurants, bars, nightclubs and public spaces.

The council voted unanimously to ban the battery-powered devices, which are filled with nicotine liquid.

If the bill is signed into law, Los Angeles would follow New York and Chicago in imposing similar rules.

A consultation looking at the advertising of e-cigarettes in the UK began last week.

The use of e-cigarettes in the UK has increased rapidly. According to data research company Mintel, the market is now worth £193m.

Their use has been controversial, with some politicians saying they are "re-normalising" smoking.

'Online clinic'

Rather than inhaling the toxic substances found in tobacco, e-cigarette users inhale vaporised liquid nicotine. Because of this, their use has become known as "vaping".

Currently e-cigarette companies in the UK are able to advertise their products on television and through normal advertising channels.

The consultation by the Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) aims to provide "clarity and protection" about the advertising of e-cigarettes.

At the launch of the consultation, CAP secretary, Shahriar Coupal, said: "The market for e-cigarettes is fast-growing and the existing rules haven't been able to give advertisers the clarity they need. By proposing new specific rules, we're providing a clear framework for responsible advertising.

"Given the potential association with tobacco products and the fact that many e-cigarettes contain nicotine, it's important we put in place strong responsibility rules to make sure that the public and particularly children are protected."

The EU was also looking at the use of e-cigarettes and the outcome of those discussions would determine how the products were regulated and advertised in future, the consultation document said.

New York voted to ban vaping in public spaces at the end of 2013 and Chicago does not allow people to vape where smoking is also banned.

The UK government announced that under-18s would be banned from buying e-cigarettes in the same way that they were unable to buy tobacco products.

To try to prevent young video gamers from taking up smoking, a Swedish non-smoking organisation has set up an anti-smoking clinic in the video game Minecraft.

It conducted a survey that suggested Swedish teenagers thought people started smoking to show they were fearless.

"We want to help young people to talk about fears, instead of hiding them behind a cigarette," Ann-Therese Enarsson from A Non-Smoking Generation told news website PSFK.

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