A bill has been passed by The Upper House in Japan to reduce microparticles, in a bid to reduce ocean pollution.
The legislation has called on companies to cease use of microproducts in their products – with a focus on business such as makers of face washes and toothpastes. However, there will be no sanctions placed on those that don’t comply.
The bill is calling for manufacturers to reduce emissions of the plastic particles that reach up to five millimetres across. According to The Enviroment Ministry, it is thought to be the first legislation that includes measures to reduce microplastics.
The law is a revision of legislation that promotes the removal and disposal of marine debris. While the Japan Cosmetic Industry Association urged the private sector to reduce microplastic use in 2016, the country lags behind countries such as the US, Britain and France which have outright banned the production of cosmetics with microplastics.