Draft legislation for the UK ban on microbeads in rinse off personal care products has been published, alongside separate legislation for the devolved administrations of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) committed to banning the manufacture and sale of cosmetics and personal care products containing microbeads last year after research found that the tiny pieces of plastic could post a threat to the marine environment.

A UK-wide public consultation was held on the topic earlier this year, and responses have been used to draft the legislation, which the government plans to bring into force by the end of 2017, with the ban on sale beginning on 1 January 2018 and the ban on manufacture beginning on 30 June 2018.

The legislation been formally notified in the London Gazette and the draft legislation is available to view on Defra’s website until 11 October 2017.

Any person may make representations on the draft legislation for England in writing to the Secretary of State.  Any such representations should be sent by 11 October 2017 to: Marine Litter Policy Team, Defra, 8B Millbank, 17 Smith Square, London, SW1P 3JR or by email to marinelitter@defra.gsi.gov.uk.