Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Help Support EcoWatch

Illinois Breaks Ground With Country's First Microbead Ban

Health + Wellness
Illinois Breaks Ground With Country's First Microbead Ban

Other states have discussed it, but Illinois is the first to put action behind words.

This week, the state became the nation's first to enact a ban on microbeads, the small plastic particles found in beauty and cosmetic products. Gov. Pat Quinn's legislative signing bans the manufacturing or sale of products that contain the beads. Companies add microbeads to facial scrubs, cleansers and other products to help in skin exfoliation, but they can last in waterways for centuries, accumulating toxic chemicals on their surfaces while threatening public health and wildlife.  

“Banning microbeads will help ensure clean waters across Illinois and set an example for our nation to follow,” Quinn said. “Lake Michigan and the many rivers and lakes across our state are among our most important natural resources.

"We must do everything necessary to safeguard them."

Illinois officials celebrate Gov. Quinn's signing of legislation to ban the manufacturing and sale of products containing microbeads. Photo credit: Illinois Environmental Council

As with most laws, the impact won't be felt immediately. The Illinois passage requires manufacturers to remove synthetic microbeads from their process by the end of 2018, while sales will be illegal in 2019. Still, groups who make protecting water and the environment were pleased with Quinn and the legislature.

“Congratulations to Gov. Quinn for signing SB 2727.  Illinois is the first state in the nation to enact a law banning microbeads and we are grateful to Governor Quinn for signing this legislation so quickly,” Jennifer Walling, executive director of the Illinois Environmental Council, said in a statement.  “It is great to see Illinois leading the way on laws that will help reduce plastic pollution in our Great Lakes.”

The 5 Gyres Institute has been instrumental in bringing microbead awareness to the forefront. Last year, a group of researchers released a study based on a survey of the Great Lakes region, where "we found high concentrations of micro-plastics, more than most ocean samples collected worldwide,” 5 Gyres co-director Marcus Eriksen said.

L’Oreal, The Body Shop, Colgate-Palmolive, Unilever, Johnson & Johnson and Procter & Gamble are among the companies who have already agreed to phase out the use of microbeads.

California's state assembly passed a ban earlier this year, but it has yet to make it out of the state senate. New York was the first state to propose a microbead ban, but it has yet to be approved.

——–

YOU ALSO MIGHT LIKE

New York Sets Precedent By Proposing Nation’s First Microbead Ban

California Assembly Passes Historic Law to Remove Plastic Microbeads from Personal Care Products

DamNation Explores History of Dams and Brilliance of Rivers Reborn, Premieres at SXSW

——– 

54% of parents with school-age children expressed concern that their children could fall behind academically, according to a poll conducted over the summer of 2020. Maria Symchych-Navrotska / Getty Images

By Pamela Davis-Kean

With in-person instruction becoming the exception rather than the norm, 54% of parents with school-age children expressed concern that their children could fall behind academically, according to a poll conducted over the summer of 2020. Initial projections from the Northwest Evaluation Association, which conducts research and creates commonly used standardized tests, suggest that these fears are well-grounded, especially for children from low-income families.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

A teenager reads a school English assignment at home after her school shut down because of the COVID-19 pandemic on March 22, 2020 in Brooklyn, New York. Andrew Lichtenstein / Corbis via Getty Images

The pandemic has affected everyone, but mental health experts warn that youth and teens are suffering disproportionately and that depression and suicide rates are increasing.

Read More Show Less

Trending

In an ad released by Republican Voters Against Trump, former coronavirus task force member Olivia Troye roasted the president for his response. Republican Voters Against Trump / YouTube

Yet another former Trump administration staffer has come out with an endorsement for former Vice President Joe Biden, this time in response to President Donald Trump's handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

Read More Show Less
Climate Group

Every September for the past 11 years, non-profit the Climate Group has hosted Climate Week NYC, a chance for business, government, activist and community leaders to come together and discuss solutions to the climate crisis.

Read More Show Less
A field of sunflowers near the Mehrum coal-fired power station, wind turbines and high-voltage lines in the Peine district of Germany on Aug. 3, 2020. Julian Stratenschulte / picture alliance via Getty Images

By Elliot Douglas

The coronavirus pandemic has altered economic priorities for governments around the world. But as wildfires tear up the west coast of the United States and Europe reels after one of its hottest summers on record, tackling climate change remains at the forefront of economic policy.

Read More Show Less

Support Ecowatch