Making sense of microplastics? Public understandings of plastic pollution

Year of Publication

2020

This paper explores people's knowledge and understandings of microplastics; the role of media in framing perceptions and socio-cultural dimensions to popular solutions to reduce single-use plastics.

Source:

Science Direct

Author(s):

Lesley Henderson, Christopher Green

Geography:

Global

Type:

Measurement (System/Market/Tool), Primary Data

Purpose of Measurement:

Understanding the Problem

Impact theme(s):

Behavior Change, Oceans

This paper explores people's knowledge and understandings of microplastics; the role of media in framing perceptions and socio-cultural dimensions to popular solutions to reduce single-use plastics. The study found that the most people were unaware of microplastics, though environmentally conscious participants had heard of microbeads due to media reporting concerning regulation. The study also notes that the scale of microplastics (which are not easily detected), poor understanding of the science behind microplastics and cultural ideas about healthy and appropriate behaviour present barriers to change.