The New South Wales (NSW) Government has become the first in Australia to ban all solariums. The NSW Environment Minister Robyn Parker has announced that the Government will be banning tanning beds from December 31, 2014. New South Wales will be the only place in the world besides Brazil to issue a total ban on ultraviolet solariums tanning units.
Australia has the highest incidence of skin cancer in the world and using sunbeds is associated with a range of skin cancers, including melanoma, which is the most life-threatening form of skin cancer among 15 to 39-year-olds. Since many years the Cancer Council has been arguing to ban all tanning salons as they claim that anyone who first used a tanning bed before they turned 35 has doubled their risk of developing melanoma.
Ms. Parker said, "It is a number one carcinogen."
Greens MP John Kaye has welcomed the ban. but he said, "It should be immediate. Waiting around for three years means about 43 people we estimate will die needlessly."
Ms. Parker clarified that the 2014 deadline was chosen to give tanning businesses a chance to diversify.