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article imageWhy did Illinois ban microbeads?

By Walter McDaniel     Jun 16, 2014 in Environment
Illinois legislators recently banned microbeads in soap and not without reason. These tiny structures have a tendency to soak up toxins and fish love to eat them.
The plastic nature of the microbeads has them soak up toxic materials once they are washed out into areas of the Great Lakes. Their small size makes them difficult to filter out in treatment and also means that when bunched together they can absorb even more toxic substances.
While plastics are not in and of themselves terribly dangerous to wildlife, their tendency to become toxic over time makes them quite dangerous. Tests revealed by private organizations such as EcoSuperior and a few done by local governments in the Great Lakes have shown that the concentration is high. This information comes to us from multiple journalists across sites like the CBC and Gizmodo.
One major study
that we saw dealt with the worms in environments like this. When these creatures consume the tiny beads it reduces their overall lifespan due to the various chemicals the plastic has soaked up. Even without the pollutants these can clog the intestinal tracts of various fish.
Banning these items makes perfect sense because we do not yet have a better way to deal with them. A single bottle of facial scrub could have up to 330,000 miniature beads in it.
More about Soap, microbeads, Toxins, Illinois
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