Walking through Darlington I am struck by the vast amounts of disposable vapes that line the streets. Their fluorescent plastic sitting by every roadside serves only to distract people from the natural beauty that the town has to offer.

When speaking to the Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak - In light of his recent proposals to create a ‘smoke free generation’ and raise the smoking age annually, he spoke of the Government’s recent consultation to ‘crack down on cheap and accessible disposable vapes’. Before discussing how, under Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulations, retailers who make over £100,000 annually are obliged to provide in store take back of these electrical items. With smaller businesses too, able to contribute funds to the distributor take back scheme so as to ensure vapes are recycled - therefore minimising the environmental impact of disposable vapes. 

As the number of disposable vapes being littered in towns and the countryside, like those in the local area, is deeply concerning. With around five million disposable vapes being thrown away every week in the UK, many of which are not adequately recycled and are instead littered or discarded with residual waste. Therefore leaving places suffocated by shards of bright plastic or segments of these vapes, damaging the character and appearance of streets in towns and villages. 

And so, with the national number of people who vape increasing every year, it seems only apt that we begin to question the environmental impact of these disposable vices on the local area.