More and more people are becoming aware of tiny plastic beads washing down drains, flowing through wastewater systems, and into lakes and rivers.
What's being done
Large corporations in the industry have jumped forward, leading by example.
Unilever agreed to phase out microbeads by the end of 2015; Proctor & Gamble and Johnson & Johnson by the end of 2017. It has yet to be confirmed but Colgate-Palmolive set their goal for the end of 2014. Aveda and Lush trumped them all by ceasing use of microplastics altogether.
It's exciting to see major manufacturers responding to this problem unforced.
In June 2014, Illinois was the first state to confront the issue through legislation in the US. Although their bill doesn’t account for “biodegradable” plastics, microbeads are finding their way to court. New York, Michigan, and Ohio are pushing for legislation as well.
In Canada, the MOE have been conducting studies on microplastics in the Great Lakes. But beyond that, there hasn't been much else.
For the past two months we've challenged you to pledge not to buy products containing microbeads.
We're thrilled to see many of you took the pledge without question. Your quick responses made it clear that you understand the immense problem microbeads pose to your health and the environment.
Which is why we’re presenting our winter challenge one more time.
If you take the pledge you have the option of joining our ask of the Federal government. And we hope you do.
Our goal is to have microbeads added to the Priority Substances List which will expedite the government’s review on microbeads. The sooner we can see microbeads removed from common care products, the sooner our waterways can breathe some relief.
If you agree microbeads don't belong in our waterways, now is your chance to speak up.