Hawaii has done something no other state in the country has done…….yet. In fact, it’s the first law of its kind anywhere in the world. It’s banning sunscreen that use chemicals believed to kill coral reefs. If you’ve been to Hawaii and spent any time at all in the beautiful ocean, both the coral reefs and the sea life in Hawaii likely have a special place in your memory. They do in mine, that’s for sure.
I reached out to some insider friends of mine in the islands because I wondered if this law was a big deal to the locals. Did most people in Hawaii even know about the law and were they in favor of it.
My friends told me that YES, the sunscreen ban is a very big deal in Hawaii and it was met with much opposition from the sunscreen industry. No surprise there as far as the opposition goes. Those two banned ingredients are in almost all sunscreen products and it’s hoped that the ban would encourage manufacturers to develop new products with alternative chemicals that will be as effective. The bill doesn’t take effect for three years, so it’s hoped during that time the industry will come around.
My friends also mentioned that curiously, many dermatologists came out against the ban, saying it would encourage people to go out without any sunscreen at all. That seems like an odd reaction because I think people either use sunscreen or they don’t.
I agree with my friends when they say that sunscreen manufacturers and dermatologists, for that matter, should look at the big picture. New sunscreens can be developed. Dead coral reefs can’t be brought back to life. Let’s hope it doesn’t come down to greed and that the manufacturers will spend money on research and development. Consumers have options and, no doubt, will have many more options in three years!
Here’s a link to the story!
Shelli Stein is a health and fitness entrepreneur who travels the world in search of culture, food, and fun! Besides contributing to Point Me to the Plane, you can find her at Joy in Movement.