Maui county should ban non-biodegradable laundry soaps
Maui county should create a new rule, to use biodegradable laundry soaps only: Mandating that all laundry detergents sold and used in the County would decrease pollution and contamination of our groundwater and our oceans. We can improve the quality of our wastewater by banning non-biodegradable laundry soaps from Maui county. We have a sunscreen ban, but think about the damage that all of the wastewater can do when it is contaminated by harmful substances. The average household can create 5000 gallons of contaminated laundry water per year. Laundry Soaps typically contain dyes, optical brighteners, chemicals, and microplastics, in the form of microbeads. These chemicals and plastics are often non-biodegradable and persist for long periods, and can do damage to waterways ecosystems, and ocean organisms. Most common laundry detergents contain microbeads and microplastic fragments. Some tests found that one of the most popular brands of laundry detergent contained roughly 178,000 microbeads in one milliliter of detergent, which leads to over 2.5 million microbeads per load of laundry!
Laundry Pods: Additionally, Laundry Pods are often made of Polyvinyl Alcohol (PVA) or other derivative chemicals—which have been found extremely damaging to aquatic life.
Microplastics in the food chain: These microplastics are then consumed by microscopic organisms called zooplankton, which are then eaten by small aquatic animals, which are then eaten by larger aquatic animals, and so on up the food chain. This process is called bioaccumulation and can result in large aquatic animals containing dangerous and often deadly amounts of plastic in their systems. Scientific studies have shown humans are ingesting thousands of these microfibers annually from our water, air, and food. Textile fibers are often found in seafood and fish on sale for human consumption.
Baby fish in Hawaii are now eating Microplastics: Tiny larval fish in the nursery waters off the coast of Hawaii have a new and plentiful source of food, which has no nutritional value, is high in toxins, and can take decades to break down. In these waters, plastic fragments outnumber baby fish by a ratio of seven to one, a recent study revealed.
On average, washing machines use 19 gallons of water per load, which, for the average household that runs between 5 and 6 loads per week, adds up to 5,605 gallons of water per year: https://prudentreviews.com/how-much-water-does-a-washing-machine-use/#:~:text=On%20average%2C%20washing%20machines%20use,gallons%20of%20water%20per%20year.
Most Laundry Detergents are not biodegradable: The vast majority of detergents, particularly the brand name detergents, are not biodegrable. They contain chemicals such optical brighteners, dyes, artificial fragrances, and a number of other non-natural ingredients. You can read about this in more detail in our laundry detergent ingredients article. https://laundry-alternative.com/blogs/about/biodegradable-detergent
Most common laundry detergents contain microbeads and microplastic fragments: Some tests found that one of the most popular brands of laundry detergent contained roughly 178,000 microbeads in one milliliter of detergent, which leads to over 2.5 million microbeads per load of laundry! https://thekindlife.com/laundry-ocean-pollution/#:~:text=Most%20common%20laundry%20detergents%20contain,microbeads%20per%20load%20of%20laundry!
Washing Laundry May Be An Underappreciated Source of Microplastic Pollution: https://news.climate.columbia.edu/2019/08/22/laundry-microplastic-pollution/
Tiny larval fish in the nursery waters off the coast of Hawaii have a new and plentiful source of food, which has no nutritional value, is high in toxins, and can take decades to break down. In these waters, plastic fragments outnumber baby fish by a ratio of seven to one, a recent study revealed. https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2019/11/microplastics-hawaii-oceans-environment/
Prey-size plastics are invading larval fish nurseries: https://www.pnas.org/doi/10.1073/pnas.1907496116
How our detergent footprint is polluting aquatic ecosystems: Contamination and pollution of water are serious problems today. Many of the chemical substances that are disposed of in water bodies are toxic and hazardous. Many laundry detergents contain approximately 35 to 75 percent phosphate salts. Phosphates can cause a variety of water pollution problems. For example, phosphate tends to inhibit the biodegradation of organic substances. Non-biodegradable substances cannot be eliminated by public or private wastewater treatment. https://www.downtoearth.org.in/blog/water/how-our-detergent-footprint-is-polluting-aquatic-ecosystems-77935