Disposable, single use vapes are an “unnecessary evil” that should be banned, according to South Scotland MSP Colin Smyth.

Speaking in the Scottish Parliament during a debate on youth vaping, the local MSP welcomed a Scottish Government review into the environmental impact and management of disposable vapes.

However, the MSP believes that with alternatives available, disposable vapes should be banned, and according to Mr Smyth at present there are few recycling facilities for disposable vapes available and many are therefore simply thrown away after use.

Colin Smyth said: “Even though a person has to be over 18 to purchase e-cigarettes legally, it is clear that the brightly coloured and fruit-flavoured vapes are marketed in a way to attract—in fact, ruthlessly target—young people, often on social media platforms.

“Along with the health concerns surrounding e-cigarettes, the toxic and single-use plastic waste that is caused by disposable vapes is also becoming a deep concern and one that I want to focus the rest of my comments on.

“According to research by Material Focus, at least 1.3 million disposables vapes are thrown away every week in the UK.

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"That conservative estimate is two every second. It is the equivalent of 22 football pitches of plastic litter, but less than a third is recycled.

“I welcome the fact that the Government has commissioned a review into the environmental impact and management of disposable vapes, which could lead to a ban on the product.

“If we are being honest, I do not think that we need a review to tell us that there are already alternatives out there and that disposable vapes are an unnecessary evil that could and should be banned.

“The Scottish Government’s upcoming circular economy bill is a prime opportunity to deliver a ban. I strongly urge the Government to take that opportunity and get on with ending the sale of disposable vapes in our shops."

“We are all trying to cut down on single use plastic in our daily lives and this should also apply to disposable vapes.

“There are alternative, refillable vapes out there and for the sake of our environment, disposable, single use vapes must become a thing of the past.”