While consumer safety groups like the Environmental Working Group have largely led the charge for higher sunscreen standards The FDA has responded this year by improving regulation and standards of the manufacturing process. There is another concern not only to our own skin but an impact on our environment as well. According to a study released in January 2008, four common chemical sunscreen agents may be at least partly responsible for increased coral bleaching worldwide. Cinnimate, benzophenone, parabens (artificial preservatives) and camphor derivatives were found to activate viruses in the algae. Not only are these chemicals infecting the reef, they are also disrupting the surrounding ecosystem as well. Algae being the primary energy source for coral reefs, once infected and depleted, the coral bleaches and dies. An estimated four to six thousand pounds of chemical sunscreen wash off swimmers each year and ten percent of the world’s coral reefs are destroyed. Environmental groups and environmentally conscious scuba and snorkel resorts around the world suggest using biodegradable zinc oxide-based sunscreens when entering fragile ecosystems such as oceans, lakes and ponds. Using a chemical free sunscreen with an active ingredient of Zinc Oxide is s a conscientious alternative to damaging sunscreens that consist chemical UV absorbers, synthetic preservatives or other harsh chemicals.
Even though the FDA has improved regulations and standards on the manufacturing of sunscreen there is no response to the environmental impact that chemical sunscreen have. Here at Raw Elements USA we are producing all of our formulas with natural and certified organic ingredients. We only use Earth’s Mineral, Non Nano Zinc Oxide as the Active Ingredient and never use any chemical UV absorbers, synthetic preservatives or harsh chemicals.