Go to main content

Raising awareness of microplastic pollution among schoolchildren

08 May 2023
Share via WhatsApp Share via e-mail

ICTA-UAB researcher Michaël Grelaud and Andrea Vidal Durà from the Cartographic and Geological Institute of Catalonia (ICGC) have launched a project aimed at raising awareness among primary school students about the environmental problems caused by microplastics. 

programa de sensibilització escolar ICTA-UAB Plasticker

The project "Schools in Action: microplastics" receives the support of the Catalan Foundation for Research and Innovation (FCRI, Joan Oró 2023 Call). It will develop a series of environmental education workshops on microplastics intended for 5th and 6th grade students. 

Microplastic pollution is a current global issue concerning both society and the scientific community due to its impacts on ecosystems and human health. Catalonia, with 17% of Spain's population, is a highly urbanised region, with 42.6% of its population residing in the Barcelona metropolitan area. As a result, the urban environment is the focus of much of the socio-economic and industrial activity and is one of the major sources of plastics pollution in the environment. However, there are few scientific studies on microplastic pollution in cities. 

The project aims to bring this environmental problem closer to students to raise awareness and foster new learning based on examples and experiences. Fifteen classrooms in schools in the Barcelona metropolitan area are participating in this initiative. The educational sessions are designed to be didactic and practical, giving the students the opportunity to conduct a real sampling of microplastics in their school environment. Students will be provided with a tool specially designed by the coordinators of the Plasticker project, aimed at tracking microplastics in cities. This will allow them to obtain samples quickly and easily. The data generated by all participating schools will be used to make an initial approximation of microplastic contamination in school environments.