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Senate Shifts To Outlaw Microbeads In Personal Care Items

2:50 p.m. (AP) - Senators are moving to phase out the use of microscopic beads in personal care products sold in California starting in 2020 to protect fish and wildlife.

The vote Friday reversed the Senate's earlier opposition and sends the measure back to the Assembly for a final vote before lawmakers adjourn for the year next week.

Republicans say late amendments to AB888 prompted many manufacturers and other business critics to drop their opposition to California joining several other states in phasing out the so-called microbeads. The beads are so small that they show up in the bodies of fish and other wildlife after passing through water filtration systems.

Previous versions of the ban passed the Assembly but failed in the Senate last year and on Thursday.

The latest measure passed, 24-14.


8:00 a.m. (AP) - California legislation to ban microscopic beads in personal care products has fallen short of the needed votes.

The Sacramento Bee reports that AB888 was two votes short Thursday of the 21 it needs to clear the state Senate.

The so-called microbeads are so small that they can pass through water filtration systems and are showing up in the bodies of fish and other wildlife.

Proponents of the ban say manufacturers can substitute natural alternatives like walnut shells in exfoliating creams and scrubs. Opponents fear the bill could ban replacements that also contain plastic.

AB888 would impose the microbead ban in 2020.

A similar Assembly-approved bill also died in the Senate last year.

The bill could be brought up again before lawmakers adjourn for the year next week.