In the UK, approximately 4.5 million individuals use vape products, a significant portion of whom are working professionals.

Many have adopted vaping as a strategy to reduce their tobacco consumption and pursue a healthier lifestyle. However, improper disposal of vaping products has led to concerns, highlighting the negative impact vaping can have on the environment. Leaders must ensure proper disposal practices among employees to mitigate this issue, safeguarding both public health and the environment.

With the Office for National Statistics recently announcing that most adults (86.5%) have made changes to their lifestyle for environmental reasons – this inspired the experts at HAYPP to breakdown how to properly dispose of a vape, to help tackle this issue and protect the planet.

7 ways to dispose of your vape correctly

Vapes can be damaging to the environment for numerous reasons, the main one being that hardly any of them are being successfully recycled. A recent study suggested that more than 50% of people reported that they did not know how to properly dispose of their e-cigarette device. The proper disposal of a vape device depends on the type and materials it contains…

  1. Do Not Throw in Regular Bin: Despite it being the most common way to dispose of vapes, vapes and their components should not be thrown in the regular waste bin as they can contain hazardous materials that can cause harm to the environment.
  2. Empty the Device: Before you dispose, always ensure to remove any remaining e-liquid from the vape tank/pod (this does not apply for disposable vapes). Interestingly to note, vape kits contain lithium – which is said to be a vital component in electric car batteries – by everyone recycling their vapes, we could contribute to saving thousands of electric cars worth of lithium a year.
  3. Dispose of E-liquid Responsibly: If you have leftover e-liquid in your vape, it’s essential to dispose of it properly. If you input your postcode into the Government’s waste disposal finder, it will find you your nearest site where you can drop off liquids like e-juice. If you only have a small amount, you can mix it with an absorbent material (such as cat litter) in a sealed container before disposal.
  4. Battery Removal: If your vape has a removable battery, remove it before disposing. Batteries usually have specific recycling requirements and should not be thrown in with your regular waste. Many retailers or supermarkets that sell batteries usually have designated drop-off locations for them.
  5. Consult Local Regulations: Check your council website for information on what your local regulations are for electronic waste disposal in your area, as some regions have specific and strict guidelines for disposing of your electronic devices.
  6. Always Recycle if Possible: Your council website will have information on your nearest recycling centres as it’s important to check they accept electronic devices. Most areas now have specific e-waste recycling bins, known as Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE).
  7. Go Back to the Vape Shop: If you aren’t able to dispose in the ways listed above or you don’t feel clear on your local regulations, keep your disposed vapes in a drawer and when you next go to buy a vape, bring them with you as most vape shops have dedicated bins for used vapes.

It’s up to businesses to champion ethical environmental practices and leaders to actively encourage and educate their employees on the importance of such practices, including the proper disposal of vaping products. By doing so, it will contribute to a healthier planet and foster a culture of responsibility and sustainability within UK organisations.

Joanne Swann, Content Manager, WorkWellPro
Editor at Workplace Wellbeing Professional | Website

Joanne is the editor for Workplace Wellbeing Professional and has a keen interest in promoting the safety and wellbeing of the global workforce. After earning a bachelor's degree in English literature and media studies, she taught English in China and Vietnam for two years. Before joining Work Well Pro, Joanne worked as a marketing coordinator for luxury property, where her responsibilities included blog writing, photography, and video creation.