Bring your reef-safe sunscreens when visiting Key West

February 11, 2019 by  
Filed under Business, Green

Key West is taking steps toward promoting reef-safe sunscreens . Officials on the Key West City Commission just approved a ban on sunscreens that have ingredients that are harmful to coral reefs. The new law, which passed almost unanimously, is scheduled to be put in place by 2021. The motion outlaws sunscreens that feature octinoxate and oxybenzone in the city limits of Key West . These two chemicals are thought to be connected to coral reef bleaching. There is some research that suggests these chemicals damage the cellular structures in coral reefs, though several companies in the sunscreen industry have challenged those studies. Related: Maya Bay closes following extensive environmental damage from tourists Even if there is not a strong link between the chemicals and coral bleaching , the Key West City Commission believes banning these sunscreens is worth the price. After all, there is only one coral reef in North America. Keeping it safe is top priority, even if it means turning away business. “We have one reef, and we have to do one small thing to protect that,” Key West Mayor Teri Johnston explained. “It’s our obligation.” Unfortunately, there are few reef-safe sunscreens on the market. According to NPR , most sunscreen products in the U.S. contain octinoxate or oxybenzone. Companies like Aveeno, Johnson & Johnson, Coppertone and Neutrogena all have sunblocks that contain the banned chemicals . These corporations are also spearheading efforts to fight bans on octinoxate and oxybenzone, chemicals that they argue do not cause coral reef bleaching. Instead, they claim that a combination of climate change , ocean acidity and overfishing are the root causes of coral reef problems, including bleaching. Several companies even sent representatives to Key West in an attempt to fight the new ban. Key West is not the first municipality to enact a sunscreen ban, and it will probably not be the last. In 2018, Hawaii introduced a law that bans sunscreens that contain the chemicals in question. Officials hope the new law will protect coral reefs against bleaching, and they are urging companies to develop more reef-safe sunscreens that are better for the environment. Via NPR Image via Shutterstock

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Bring your reef-safe sunscreens when visiting Key West

Hawaii aims to ban coral reef-killing chemical sunscreens

February 20, 2017 by  
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For a long time we’ve been told to slather on sunblock to protect our skin from harsh ultraviolet radiation, but as an unintended consequence, filters in those sunscreens are washing off into the oceans and likely harming coral reefs . Now one Hawaii lawmaker is taking action. Fearing damage to the state’s fragile coral ecosystem, Senator Will Espero introduced a bill that would ban sunscreen with octinoxate and oxybenzone. Researchers detected concentrations of oxybenzone 30 times higher than levels thought to be safe for coral in Hawaii waters. The state’s Department of Land and Natural Resources said last September, “Recent studies have shown that oxybenzone causes deformities in coral larvae (planulae), making them unable to swim, settle out, and form new coral colonies. It also increase the rate at which coral bleaching occurs. This puts coral reef health at risk, and reduces resiliency to climate change .” Related: 40% of the top sunscreens don’t meet official guidelines for sun protection Haereticus Environmental Laboratory executive director Craig Downs, whose research influenced Espero’s bill, told KITV4, “Oxybenzone – it kills [coral]. It turns them into zombies if it doesn’t kill them outright.” The bill would ban sunscreens containing oxybenzone and octinoxate unless a user has a medical prescription. Unsurprisingly, sunscreen companies like L’Oréal have fought back, claiming there’s not enough evidence to validate such a ban. But Espero told Scientific American the science is on his side, and many people – from fishers to sailors to ocean sports enthusiasts – are behind the measure. According to TreeHugger, 14,000 tons of sunscreen wash off into oceans every single year, possibly exacerbating the worldwide coral bleaching issue. If you’re worried about sunburn but also want to consider your impact on the environment , check out the Environmental Working Group ‘s safe sunscreen guide . The organization lists several brands whose products meet their criteria. Via TreeHugger Images via Michael Dorausch on Flickr and Pixabay

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Hawaii aims to ban coral reef-killing chemical sunscreens

Brilliant spray-on sunscreen booth covers you head-to-toe in just 10 seconds

July 4, 2016 by  
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Finally – someone has invented a way to achieve instant, full-body sunscreen coverage. Much like spray-tan booths, the SnappyScreen unleashes a mist of SPF protection on sunbathers, covering every nook and cranny. The days of asking “hey, could you get my back?” may soon be over. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nPmJQuJzOfg SnappyScreen booths are currently installed at 10 U.S. and Caribbean hotels. Beachgoers can select their preferred SPF level (15, 30, or 40) and the company’s own blend of sunblock will be released from the painstakingly engineered sprayers, dousing guests from head to toe. The formula is free of alcohol and oxybenzone, a chemical known to trigger cancer and to be fatal to coral reefs . The best part of the convenient system may be its appeal to kids, who don’t like to put off playtime to apply sunscreen. The novelty of the device also encourages kids and adults to reapply sunscreen regularly, which reduces the harmful effects of the sun. Related: EWG’s 2016 best and worst sunscreen lists are out—is your favorite listed? Right now the SnappyScreen is only available at resorts , yet the developers have received requests from country clubs, water parks, public pools, and even private residents. In a few years’ time, the system may be just about everywhere you can find fun in the sun. + SnappyScreen Via Fast Company Images via SnappyScreen

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Brilliant spray-on sunscreen booth covers you head-to-toe in just 10 seconds

New Study Shows Rich People’s Bodies Are Filled With Unique Toxins

August 7, 2013 by  
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Sushi photo from Shutterstock It’s no secret that most adults in the US are bombarded with pollutants on a daily basis. But a recent study in Environment International has found that the chemical footprint of rich people’s bodies is very different from the toxins found in the middle and lower class. The study found that levels of mercury , arsenic, cesium, and thallium were all higher in more affluent subjects. Read the rest of New Study Shows Rich People’s Bodies Are Filled With Unique Toxins Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: BPA , chemical footprint , chemicals in sunscreen , cigarettes , Health , heavy metal exposure , mercury , oxybenzone , packaged foods , rich vs poor , smoking , socioeconomic differences , toxic burden , toxin exposure        

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New Study Shows Rich People’s Bodies Are Filled With Unique Toxins

New Study Shows Rich People’s Bodies Are Filled With Unique Toxins

August 7, 2013 by  
Filed under Eco, Green

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Sushi photo from Shutterstock It’s no secret that most adults in the US are bombarded with pollutants on a daily basis. But a recent study in Environment International has found that the chemical footprint of rich people’s bodies is very different from the toxins found in the middle and lower class. The study found that levels of mercury , arsenic, cesium, and thallium were all higher in more affluent subjects. Read the rest of New Study Shows Rich People’s Bodies Are Filled With Unique Toxins Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: BPA , chemical footprint , chemicals in sunscreen , cigarettes , Health , heavy metal exposure , mercury , oxybenzone , packaged foods , rich vs poor , smoking , socioeconomic differences , toxic burden , toxin exposure        

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New Study Shows Rich People’s Bodies Are Filled With Unique Toxins

Crossbar’s RRAM Chip Could Make Your Phone Battery Last for Weeks

August 7, 2013 by  
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A new silicon chip for your smart phone could extend its battery life so that it lasts for weeks! Crossbar , a new tech chip start up, has developed a RAM chip that stores a terabyte of data, which drains a device’s battery less. With Crossbar’s super efficient chip, lugging your phone charger everywhere you go may be a thing of the past. Read the rest of Crossbar’s RRAM Chip Could Make Your Phone Battery Last for Weeks Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “energy efficiency” , battery chargers , cell phone chargers , clean tech , Crossbar , eco design , energy efficient battery chargers , green design , phone battery longevity , RRAM , sustainable design        

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Crossbar’s RRAM Chip Could Make Your Phone Battery Last for Weeks

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