On June 8, Governor Quinn signed legislation outlawing the manufacture and sale of toiletry items containing plastic microbeads.

As you will recall from my article which appeared in the May, 2014 issue of the Northlake City news, I outlined the dangers of microbeads which are not biodegradable and slip through sewer system filters where they accumulate toxins and are harmful to wildlife. Millions of these microbeads which are used in facial cleansers and other products have been found in Lake Michigan and could find their way into our drinking water supply.

The new law becomes effective at the end of 2017, but many manufacturers, such as Johnson & Johnson, Unilver and L’Oreal, have stated that they will end the use of microbeads sooner, as early as 2015.

In the meantime, if you don’t want to use products that contain these harmful microbeads, watch for polyethylene and polypropylene in the list of ingredients.

I am happy to see that the legislature banned this insidious form of pollution, one of the first bright spots in the recent legislative session.

 

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