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Coronavirus Thailand

Huge rise in single-use plastic during Thailand’s lockdown

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PHOTO: bk.asia-city.com

One positive of the world shutting down is nature being given a much-needed chance to heal and recover. Sadly though, another not so nice consequence of the Covid-19 lockdown has been the significant increase in Thailand’s plastic waste. Why?

Coconuts Bangkok says the Thailand Environment Institute blames the rise on more people availing of single-use plastic during this time for takeaway and the delivery of food. Director Wijarn Simachaya urges the country’s residents to be more aware of how much waste they are generating while ordering takeaway food. Non-plastic alternatives are still difficult to find and expensive to buy at this stage.

Latest reports say the country’s plastic waste is now sitting at around 6,500 tonnes a day. To put that in context, it was 1,500 tonnes a day prior to the virus outbreak. In an attempt to reverse the upward trend, Wijarn is asking people to replace single-use plastic with reusable containers when ordering takeaway food. (Perhaps Wijarn can explain this to the providers of the take away services)

Earlier this year, many of the country’s biggest retailers stopped offering single-use bags to customers, in an effort to address Thailand’s overuse of plastic. See story HERE. And while the current ban on travel and severe restrictions on movement are proving very beneficial for the environment, it’s important we don’t reverse the progress Thailand has been making in reducing its plastic waste.

You may have also noticed that convenience stores are again offering plastic bags after earlier becoming part of the movement to stop handing out plastic bags for customers.

SOURCE: Coconuts Bangkok

 

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