Microplastic hazards are uncertain, and actions are not similarly prioritized by all actors. In some instances, replacement is technically simple and easily justified, but in others substitutions may come with more uncertainty, performance questions and costs. Scientific impact assessment of primary microplastics compared to their alternatives relies on a number of factors, such as microplastic harm, existence of replacement materials and the quality, cost and hazards of alternative materials. Regulations need a precise focus and must be enforceable by these measurements. Policymakers must carefully evaluate under which contexts incentives to replace certain microplastics can stimulate innovation of new, more competitive and environmentally conscious materials.
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