On 28th December 2015 President Obama signed a bipartisan bill, known as the Microbead-free Waters Act.
The bill was passed by Congress and outlaws the selling and distributing of products that contain microbeads.
A microbead is any solid plastic particle that is less than 5 millimeters in diameter. They are are used in several personal care products, ranging from toothpaste to facial scrubs. Their purpose is to exfoliate or clean and they were designed to wash down drains.
Microbeads have subsequently been found in rivers and lakes where they create environmental issues and pose a threat to aquatic life. Microbeads have been entering the food chain because the particles are mistaken for food.
According to 'Environmental Science & Technology', 8 trillion microbeads are entering the USA's aquatic habitats daily. This amount can cover 300 tennis courts every day. The intention is that this bill will protect North America's waterways.