The impact of the risk perception of ocean microplastics on tourists' pro-environmental behavior intention

Ahyoung Yoon, Daeyoung Jeong, Jinhyung Chon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


Microplastic pollution has been recognized as an emerging concern that negatively affects marine ecosystems. Given the situation, the government and environmental groups have emphasized the seriousness of microplastics to the public and encouraged them to reduce the use of microplastics. However, very few studies have examined how individuals perceive microplastics. Thus, this study aims to identify the relationship between peoples' risk perception of microplastic and pro-environmental behavioral intention. To conduct an empirical study, we used a total of 445 samples collected from online survey and adopted the partial least squares path modeling method to test the causal relationship between variables in the conceptual model. The results indicated that risk perception significantly affects pro-environmental behavioral intention and is influenced by knowledge as an environmental trigger. In addition, we highlighted that feelings of guilt and social responsibility play important mediating roles in the relation between risk perception and pro-environmental behavioral intention. This study has meaningful implications for practitioners to encourage the public's eco-friendly behavior by suggesting ways to inform knowledge of microplastics and stimulate individuals' responsibility on environment.

Original languageEnglish
Article number144782
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Jun 20


  • Feelings of guilt
  • Knowledge
  • Ocean microplastics
  • Pro-environmental behavioral intention
  • Risk perception
  • Social responsibility

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution


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