‘Reef Relief’ to help turn the tide on coral bleaching
EILAT, Israel, April 29, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Eilat, the resort city of the State of Israel, is presenting the world’s first sunscreen that is scientifically formulated not only to protect the skin from UV rays but to feed and nourish endangered coral reefs.
Eilat is home to the ecological wonder of the planet’s northernmost shallow-water reef and passionate about protecting it and other coral reefs. Coral is facing serious threats from climate change, pollution, and other human activities, with an estimated 14,000 tons of sunscreen ending up in the world’s oceans every year. As many as 80% of ordinary sunscreens contain chemicals that contribute to coral bleaching and dying reefs.
While some manufacturers have begun to remove harmful chemicals like Oxybenzone, Reef Relief goes further than any other sunscreen on the planet to protect coral reefs and help them thrive.
Marine and skincare specialists have developed a new formulation based on a non-nano, titanium-dioxide-based, mineral sunscreen. The base formula is ecocert compliant and has undergone extensive aquatic safety testing, to include c. elegans, freshwater fish, saltwater fish and coral larvae. The added reef nourishing formula is a bespoke blend of FDA-compliant trace minerals used by coral farmers to feed and support healthy growth in coral.
Giovanni Giallongo, Marine Biologist at the Ben Gurion University of the Negev in Eilat, said, “The development of a sunscreen that not only doesn’t harm coral, but has the potential to feed and nourish our reefs, is an important step towards protecting and preserving our oceans. Reef Relief could feed into the health of communities underwater and on land.”
Reef Relief sunscreen also presents to the world another first, a brand-new certification – not just SPF, but RPF: Reef Protection Factor.
An increasing number of products claim to be ‘reef-friendly’ or ‘reef-safe’, but there is a lack of regulation in this area which means that consumers are easily being misled. It’s hoped that the new RPF marque will become an industry standard and spread beyond Israel, worldwide, helping consumers make responsible choices.
Giallongo added, “This is a way of identifying sunscreen that truly cares for coral. An RPF marque as an industry standard: this could be game-changing.”
The State City of Eilat is committed to environmental sustainability and has proven a fertile ground for R&D into aquaculture, biotechnology and renewable and sustainable energy.
This latest initiative, it is hoped by Eilat, will help protect one of our planet’s most precious ecosystems, while attracting newly eco-conscious tourist visitors to explore the stunning Red Sea reefs in areas like their Coral Beach Nature Reserve and Dolphin Reef. Reef Relief is currently undergoing consumer trials.