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Scientists Want to Ban the Bead, Here’s Why….

If you are using products containing microbeads, stop using them now but DON’T throw them down the drain! Read below to find out where to send these products to be used for educational purposes. Here’s why you need to ban the bead…

Plastic Microbeads are found in common skin-cleaning products that are polluting our waters and poisoning our bodies.  At the national level a bill has already been introduced in Congress, the bipartisan Microbead-Free Waters Act of 2015 (H.R. 1321) but states seem to be having more influence.  Illinois, Maryland, Maine, New Jersey, Colorado, and Indiana have already banned and restricted the use of plastic beads. Earlier this month the California state legislature also passed a bill banning the use of microbeads, but it is still awaiting the governor’s signature. States such as CA and NY have had challenges getting a bill passed mainly because manufacturers want more time to keep these products on the market while developing new products.

Researchers at the 5 Gyres Institute found microbeads prevalent everywhere from oceans to the Great Lakes to the Los Angeles River. “Marine life mistake the microbeads for food, which is troublesome given that the plastic particles can absorb pollutants in the water before being consumed and entering the food chain”, said Stiv Wilson, Associate Director of the 5 Gyres Institute.

On a promising note several large companies have already stopped using plastic microbeads, while others have pledged to take them out of production. Johnson & Johnson, L’Oréal and Colgate-Palmolive said they will phase out microbeads in the next few years. Procter & Gamble, the parent company of Crest toothpaste, said most of their products will be microbead-free by March 2015, while the rest will be by March 2016.

Read more here

SLN’s Take Home Message

The campaign against microbeads has caught the attention of people accross the country. Awareness has led many people to stop using and purchasing microbead products and instead choosing to use natural alternatives. Companies that are responsible and honor the scientific evidence that clearly demonstrates environmental and human harm from microbeads, should be supported and commended for timely action. Here are a few things we can do to make sure microbeads are no longer introduced in our world.

  • Advocate for manufacturers to stop selling consumer products that contain plastic microbeads.
  • Check product labels for plastic content and REFUSE to purchase them.
  • Educate your Legislators to execute a ban on microbeads in consumer products.
  • Do not throw microbead products down the drain or in the trash.  Click here to find out where to send products with microbeads to be used for educational purposes.


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