Palau first to ban ‘reef toxic’ sun cream

first_imgA diver among the corals in Palau. GLOBAL_PICS The ban – which was announced in 2018 – prohibits sun cream containing any of 10 ingredients. The list includes oxybenzone and octinoxate, which absorb ultraviolet light. Mr.Remengesau said: “When science tells us that a practice is damaging to coralreefs, to fish populations, or to the ocean itself, our people take note andour visitors do too.” The islandnation markets itself as a “pristine paradise” for divers. The International Coral Reef Foundation said the bannedchemicals were “known environmental pollutants – most of them are…incrediblytoxic to juvenile stages of many wildlife species.” When the United States state of Hawaii announced a similar ban – which comes into effect in 2021 – major brands were quick to say their products were “reef bill compliant.” THE Pacificnation of Palau has become the first country to ban sun cream that is harmfulto corals and sea life. A lagoon in Palau’s Rock Islands is a Unesco World Heritage site. The country has a population of around 20,000 dotted across hundreds of islands. Palau presidentTommy Remengesau said: “We have to live and respect the environment because theenvironment is the nest of life.” “Toxicsunscreen chemicals have been found throughout Palau’s critical habitats, andin the tissues of our most famous creatures. We don’t mind being the firstnation to ban these chemicals, and we will do our part to spread the word.” Otherplaces to announce bans include the United States Virgin Islands – where thelaw takes effect in March – and the Dutch Caribbean island of Bonaire. (BBC) Thenumber of sun creams containing the harmful chemicals is declining. In 2018,experts said it was found in about half of creams and lotions. From Wednesday,sun cream that includes common ingredients, including oxybenzone, is notallowed to be worn or sold in the country.last_img