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Canada to Ban Microbeads in 2018 (January 2017)

In June 2016 the Canadian government added microbeads to the Canadian Environmental Protection Act’s (CEPA) list of toxic substances. Further action was recently taken to ban their sale entirely effective July 1, 2018.

Microbeads are the tiny particles of plastic found in many cosmetic and personal care products such as shower gels, toothpastes and facial scrubs. Improper disposal of products containing microbeads can make them damaging to the environment and human health. Due to their miniscule size, microbeads can often escape the filters of water treatment plants and find their way into oceans and lakes.

Under this new law, Canada will prohibit the manufacture and import of microbeads beginning in 2018, and ban sale of the beads in July 2018. Other countries, including the United States have passed similar legislation banning their sale and distribution.

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