"How Bad Could it Be?" The Future Effects of Marine Microplastic Pollution: Expectations and Policy Preferences
22 November 2023
About the Study
There is scientific uncertainty about the long-term health impacts of microplastics, yet the growing concentration of microplastics heightens the potential for discovering health effects in the future. The popular perception of microplastic ingestion risks suggests that public support for mitigation measures stems from perceived benefits rather than actual risk reduction. Using a stated preference study of individual option prices, we linked individuals’ subjective distribution of beliefs about the future harms of microplastics to their willingness to pay for mitigation measures, demonstrating that the benefits of mitigation may be driven by uncertainty aversion and pessimism about future states of the world.
About Peter King
Peter King is a postdoctoral research associate in environmental/ecological economics at the University of Leeds working on the DRUID project quantifying the ecosystem services provided by insects. He previously worked on the RELATE project investigating variation in preferences for woodland biodiversity at the University of Kent, and completing an economics PhD on precautionary restrictions on microplastics at the University of Bath.