Plastics and Public Health (APA4254.01)

Megan Wolff

The world’s population has tripled since the 1950s, but production of plastics has increased over 70-fold in the same period. As litter, plastic now blows on the landscape, swells in the ocean, and kills wildlife seemingly everywhere. But recent findings about the impacts of plastic on human health demonstrate that this is not just a litter problem, but a health one. Plastic, it is becoming clear, is hazardous. Many of the chemical additives in plastic are associated with cancer, neural damage, and endocrine disruption, meaning that they hack the hormone systems that regulate our bodies. A number of these chemicals do not stay put in plastic items but instead leach out into what they touch, including into food, water, air, and us. What are the impacts and what is to be done? Join Megan J. Wolff, PhD, MPH, the policy director of Beyond Plastics for an in-depth class on what is known – and what is being researched – on the impact of plastics on human health.


Learning Outcomes:

Delivery Method: Fully remote
Prerequisites: This class is open to anyone who has taken Judith Enck’s introduction class, Beyond Plastic Pollution (APA 2334), and other advanced students interested in public health. Interested students should contact the faculty member ( for registration.
Course Level: 4000-level
Credits: 1
W 7:00PM - 8:50PM (1st seven weeks)
Maximum Enrollment: 15
Course Frequency: One time only

Categories: 4000 , Advancement of Public Action , All courses , First Seven Week , Fully remote , New Courses , One Credit , Updates