Effects of the Sunscreen UV Filter, Oxybenzone (Benzophenone-3) In a 2016 study, a team of international scientists found that a common chemical in many sunscreen lotions and cosmetics is highly toxic to juvenile corals and other marine life.
What sunscreen chemicals are bad for reefs?
In July of 2018, Hawaii became the first U.S. state to ban the sale of sunscreens containing two common chemicals, oxybenzone and octinoxate, which many researchers worldwide have deemed potentially harmful to aquatic life.
How sunscreen chemicals can affect marine life?
When people shower or swim while wearing sunscreen, the chemicals in sunscreen become exposed to the environment and contaminate our waters. These chemicals are harmful to marine life as it damages and kills corals by bleaching them.
How does chemical sunscreen affect coral reefs?
Now a study finds that chemical compounds in sunscreen products can cause abrupt and complete bleaching of hard corals, even at extremely low concentrations [EHP 116:441–447; Danovaro et al.]. Zooxanthellae, symbiotic algae that live in healthy coral tissue, provide nutrients to corals through photosynthesis.
Why is sunscreen bad for coral reefs?
How Does Sunscreen Harm Coral Reefs? … One of the main culprits is Oxybenzone (Benzophenone-3), a chemical ingredient found in over 3,500 sun care products. These chemicals can lead to coral bleaching, damage the DNA of corals, and increase abnormal growth and deformities.
Why is sunscreen bad for the ocean?
In a 2016 study, a team of international scientists found that a common chemical in many sunscreen lotions and cosmetics is highly toxic to juvenile corals and other marine life. Oxybenzone, or BP-3, is found in more than 3,500 skin care products worldwide for protection against the sun’s harmful effects.
Are ingredients in sunscreen harmful?
Found in physical sunscreens
The ingredient doesn’t cause harm unless it’s swallowed or inhaled. Compared to avobenzone and titanium oxide, it’s cited as a photostable, effective, and safe for sensitive skin.
Is your sunscreen killing the coral reef?
The likely answer, unless you are already sunscreen- reef savvy, is yes. After decades of research to develop the most effective sunscreens, it turns out that the chemicals best designed to protect you from a heavy dose of burning rays and potential skin cancer are toxic to coral reefs.
How does zinc oxide affect marine life?
It’s toxic to algae, sea urchins, fish and mammals. It inhibits embryonic development in sea urchins. … Noncoated nanoparticles (less than 35 nanometers in diameter) of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide (referred to as “mineral-based” sunscreens) can be toxic to corals, fish and other reef organisms.
What ingredients in sunscreen are bad for the environment?
Sunscreen ends up in the ocean and other waterways after you swim or shower it off. Common ingredients like oxybenzone, octinoxate, nano titanium dioxide, and nano zinc oxide can harm coral reefs and sea creatures.
How does sunscreen cause coral bleaching?
When you swim with sunscreen on, chemicals like oxybenzone can seep into the water, where they’re absorbed by corals. These substances contain nanoparticles that can disrupt coral’s reproduction and growth cycles, ultimately leading to bleaching.