Florida’s Key West takes first step towards banning coral killing sunscreens

Commission votes to ban sunscreens containing oxybenzone and octinoxate

The US island city of Key West in Florida has moved to ban sunscreens containing ingredients that could damage coral reefs.

The Key West City Commission unanimously voted to ban the sale of sunscreens that contain two ingredients, oxybenzone and octinoxate, following growing scientific evidence they encourage coral bleaching and damage to aquatic life.

Leading marine scientists have argued that the chemicals can destroy coral by absorbing its nutrients.

When coral reefs are depleted, it triggers damage further down the marine ecosystem, affecting algae, fish and other sea creatures.

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