Coral reefs are among the most vulnerable, biodiverse and productive ecosystems of the world and they’re currently threatened by multiple-impacts (fishery, pollution) and climate change. While sunscreen consumption is increasing to protect from UV damage their release in seawater has been demonstrated to have a significant impact on marine life. Our research showed that sunscreen chemical filters, parabens (preservatives) and essences can cause the rapid and complete bleaching of tropical stony corals, even at extremely low concentrations. Responsible travellers should reduce their sun exposure, wear fabrics and use eco-compatible sunscreens (without parabens, oxybenzone, octinoxate, and other harmful compounds) to minimize the impact on coral.
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