Two of the first bills being introduced into the Wisconsin Legislature (SB 15 and AB 15) are aimed at phasing out the manufacture and sale of microbeads–tiny pieces of plastic that are used in many soaps, scrubs, and toothpastes for exfoliation. These microbeads are prolific in Lake Michigan (one study found 17,000 pieces of plastic per square km), and can be harmful to water quality and fish and other aquatic life. Fish ingest microbeads and they get lodged in their guts. Microbeads are made up of toxic chemicals, and can also attract toxins that can be carcinogenic, neurotoxic, or can affect endocrine/reproductive systems of fish and aquatic life. A recent study by Illinois/Indiana Seagrant found plastics in 17 different species of fish in Lake Michigan, and no species was found to be free of this contamination. Several hearings on these bills have occurred at the committee level already. Please contact your State Senators and Representatives and urge them to support SB 15 and AB 15.