Statement by Lezlee Westine, President and CEO Personal Care Products Council In Response to U.S. Senate Passage of Microbead-Free Waters Act of 2015

“We applaud today’s U.S. Senate passage of the Microbead-Free Waters Act of 2015, which creates a planned and pragmatic national phase-out process in the interest of both consumers and the personal care products and cosmetics industry.

“The bill received overwhelming bipartisan support from both the U.S. Senate and House, a testament to the leadership of Senators Rob Portman, (R-OH) and Kirsten Gillibrand, (D-NY), as well as Ranking Member Frank Pallone Jr., (D-NJ) and Chairman Fred Upton, (R-MI), who brought together numerous and diverse stakeholders to address this important issue.  The industry is proud to be a part of that process and is prepared to fully phase out solid plastic microbeads in personal cleansing products by July 1, 2017.

“The House bill is aimed at the proliferation of conflicting state and local restrictions that create unnecessary disruption and confusion for both consumers and companies.

“Solid, plastic microbeads are used in personal care cleansing products because of their safe and effective exfoliating properties.  Research by independent scientists and nongovernmental organizations show that microbeads from all types of industrial uses are miniscule contributors to marine plastic debris; cosmetic microbeads are a tiny fraction of that.  At the same time, our member companies take very seriously their role as environmental stewards of their products. As a result, companies have voluntarily committed to replace solid plastic microbeads. We look forward to this important bipartisan legislation making its way to President Obama’s desk and being signed into law.”