The Thai government has recently banned sunscreens containing harmful chemicals that damage coral reeds in marine national parks. Harmful chemicals such as oxybenzone, octinoxate, 4-methylbenzylidene camphor or butylparaben are having a major impact on delicate slow-growing corals.
The ban follows in suit of other countries such as the Pacific Island of Palau and the US state of Hawaii, who have imposed similar rules and regulations. Anyone who violates these rules will face a fine of B100,000 (THB), the equivalent of up to £2,000.
However there are still coral-safe sunscreens out there. Sunscreens which contain active mineral ingredients such as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide are safe to use as the materials are organic, therefore they’re not harmful to coral reefs.
Other countries that have introduced a sunscreen ban with these harsh chemicals include:
- US Virgin Islands
- Key West in the United States