Scripps-Rady Ocean Plastic Pollution Challenge White Papers
Rethink how we protect marine conservation and cultural areas from plastic pollution.


The second component of the Scripps-Rady Challenge was team-based research from March - May, 2021. The 29 program participants conducted targeted research to address four distinct gaps in solving the plastics problem: changing human behavior, evaluating policy solutions, data mapping, and assessing residents’ attitudes towards plastic consumption and plastic waste reduction initiatives in the Challenge’s hometown of San Diego.

A mentor worked closely with each team to provide guidance and feedback. Teams produced a suite of white papers based on their research; each paper includes a current state of the team’s topic related to plastic pollution in California, an analysis of major knowledge gaps, and a novel contribution to the topic.  

The full white papers are available in an open access PDF format below. Consistent with the systems-thinking approach to tackling the issues of marine plastic pollution, the key findings of each white paper, taken together, contribute towards a suite of strategies to help California curb the flow of plastic into its coastal ocean.

Photo credits, clockwise from top left: Holly Rindge; Holly Rindge; Scripps Institution of Oceanography; Jules Jackson.
Read the Challenge Blog to learn about the teams, finale, and final proposals!