As different world nations are coming together to take measures protecting the environment against human caused damage, the Pacific Island of Palau too has come up with a first of its kind environmental ban that has been put into effect from January 1, 2020.
The Palau government has put a ban on sunscreens with chemical properties, including, octinoxate and oxybenzone that are believed to have an extreme toxic impact on the island’s wildlife species, most prominently coral reefs. These toxic chemicals that have been found in the ocean not only cause coral bleaching, but even have the potential to distort the coral DNA, leading to future deformities in corals.
As part of the government’s Responsible Tourism Education Act, anyone found selling these banned sunscreens would be fined up to a thousand US dollars. Tourists visiting Palau need to be particularly cautious about not bringing any such sunscreens while visiting the diving spots in Palau.
As per reports, approximately 3-5 gallons of sunscreen with chemical ingredients lands up in the ocean every day, gradually affecting and deforming Palau’s coral reefs, fish as well as other wildlife species. This is a huge concern for the authorities, and the reason why immediate steps were required to curb this environmental hazard.
Currently, chemical sunscreens have already been banned from Jellyfish Lake, which is Palau’s one of the most popular tourist destinations. It’s high time that locals and tourists follow government guidelines following the ban, and do their bit to preserve Palau’s wildlife species from any further damage.
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