Honolulu, Hawaii



RE:    H.B. No. 621

       H.D. 1

       S.D. 1




Honorable Donna Mercado Kim

President of the Senate

Twenty-Eighth State Legislature

Regular Session of 2015

State of Hawaii




     Your Committee on Ways and Means, to which was referred H.B. No. 621, H.D. 1, entitled:




begs leave to report as follows:


     The purpose and intent of this measure is to protect the marine ecosystem by phasing out, within the State, the manufacture and sale of personal care products containing synthetic plastic microbeads.


     Your Committee received written comments in support of this measure from the American Chemistry Council, Conservation Council for Hawaii, Surfrider Foundation, and three individuals.  Beach Environmental Awareness Campaign Hawaii, Californians Against Waste, and The Story of Stuff Project submitted written comments on the measure.


     Your Committee finds that synthetic plastic microbeads pose a serious threat to ocean and marine life.  Synthetic plastic microbeads are non-biodegradable solid plastic particles measuring less than five millimeters that are commonly added to skin care products.  In particular, synthetic plastic microbeads are most often found in skin care products that are eventually rinsed down a drain and into the public wastewater system.  Synthetic plastic microbeads are too small to be filtered in sewage treatment facilities, therefore, they are discharged into the ocean.  Marine life face potential DNA damage and death from eating the synthetic plastic microbeads that pollute the ocean.  Gradually prohibiting the manufacturing and sale of personal care products that contain synthetic plastic microbeads will allow the cosmetic industry time to adjust their manufacturing practices while ultimately protecting Hawaii's marine environment.


     Your Committee has amended this measure by changing the effective date to July 1, 2053, to facilitate further discussion.


     As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Ways and Means that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 621, H.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Third Reading in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 621, H.D. 1, S.D. 1.


Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Ways and Means,