‘Exfoliating’ Microbeads Are Officially Illegal After Damaging Waterways

Those microbeads featured in tooth pastes and “exfoliating” soaps are now illegal. The president signed a bill this week that had bipartisan support, making it illegal to sell or distribute products that contain the beads. The reason? They are basically destroying waterways around the country. The microbeads are so small that they can get through filtration systems, meaning they end up back in lakes, rivers and oceans. Obviously, tiny pieces of plastic getting flushed into habitats isn’t exactly the greatest thing for the health of marine wildlife. And, up to now, it’s been a huge problem. The group Environmental Science & Technology recently found that trillions of the beads ended up in waterways every single day. According to CNN, “The volume was enough to coat the surface of 300 tennis courts every day.”

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