Date of Award

8-2015

Document Type

Capstone-Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Program Name

Environmental Policy and Management

Capstone Instructor

Dr. Elizabeth D'Andrea

Abstract

This study addresses the growing problems posed by PPCP disposal and the resulting challenges faced by consumers, water treatment experts, environmentalists, and scientists. While other studies have addressed some of these challenges, this study investigates the true root cause of incorrect disposal practices, concentrating on prevention rather than on symptoms of this issue. This study examines current literature on the manufacturing, packaging, and marketing of PPCPs to help identify potential gaps that contribute to poor disposal practices and ultimately introduce risks to humans and the environment. Finally, available studies, product information and other literature are examined using a content analysis to code for key concepts and ideas. Using the information gathered, a root cause analysis indicates gaps in consumer PPCP disposal practices are a direct result of limited consumer knowledge. Additionally, manufacturer-provided product information and advertising were key factors influencing levels of consumer awareness. Consequently, consumers were uninformed on the human and environmental threats posed by incorrectly disposing of PPCPs.

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