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WWF Thailand pushes for sustainable tourism and preservation

The Thaiger

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WWF Thailand pushes for sustainable tourism and preservation | The Thaiger
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An animal lover, nature lover and a Thai national, CEO of World Wide Fund-Thailand, Natalie Phaholyothin is particularly proud of Thailand’s national environment and wildlife heritage.

“We have 127 national parks, which is quite a high number, and that in itself should be an indication of the potential for Thailand to become more of a sustainable tourism destination.

“All Thais should be really proud that we have so much biodiversity in Thailand. How do we make it sustainable? How can all Thais be encouraged to think about how we can co-exist with nature and thrive together? Because if we don’t preserve nature, we also don’t preserve our own future.”

The World Wide Fund for Nature was established in Thailand in 1995 and now employs 60 staff – a third are deployed in the field the majority of the time.

The World Wide Fund for Nature works with other NGOs and government organisations like the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation under the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment. Since being registered as a foundation in Thailand in 2018, it also carries out fundraising work.

Natalie says that tiger and elephant conservation are two of WWF-Thailand’s key areas of focus. Together with the DNP the organisation has been closely monitoring the tiger population of Mae Wong and Khlong Lan National Parks in Nakhon Sawan and Kamphaeng Phet provinces, to protect the big cats from poaching and to ensure they have sufficient prey.

Addressing the issue of human-elephant ‘conflict’ is an important part of the work being done with wild elephants. In Prachuap Khiri Khan province’s Kuiburi National Park, which is surrounded almost completely by farms, WWF-Thailand has been involved in efforts to turn the area’s elephants from a problem into an asset for the locals.

Tourism-related training, with support from WWF-Thailand, has been provided to the community for a number of years. As such, many locals are tour guides and drivers catering to this wildlife-viewing market while some families offer homestays.

WWF-Thailand’s illegal wildlife trade program aims to reduce the demand for animal products like ivory, and it works with the Royal Thai Police and international organisations like Interpol and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.

While Thailand has taken major steps in recent years to stamp out the ivory trade, it is still a hotspot for the sale and trafficking of illegal ivory – much of which is from Africa where elephants continue to be slaughtered in large numbers – into Asian countries where demand is high.

There are good signs, said Natalie, of growing consciousness in helping to preserve the country’s natural treasures with reference in particular to the Thai Bankers’ Association and Bank of Thailand who now look more closely at who money is lent to.

SOURCE: Tourism Authority of Thailand

WWF Thailand pushes for sustainable tourism and preservation | News by The Thaiger

CEO of World Wide Fund-Thailand, Natalie Phaholyothin

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Environment

Large “chunk” breaks off Krabi island, damaging coral reef at popular dive site

Caitlin Ashworth

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Large “chunk” breaks off Krabi island, damaging coral reef at popular dive site | The Thaiger
PHOTO: National News Bureau

A large chunk of an island near Koh Phi Phi in southern Thailand has broken off and collapsed on top of a coral reef at a popular dive site. No one was around when the cliffsides sheered off and collapsed into the sea, but national park officers on a routine patrol noticed a section of the island had broken off and saw two large sections of rock above the water.

There has been considerable rain in the region over the past 2 months.

A section of Koh Mae Urai, located between Koh Phi Phi and Krabi, broke off in 2 large pieces estimated to weigh around 30,000 to 50,000 tonnes. Divers headed down to examine the site to see how much damage has been done to the coral reef. The water has been murky, so it’s hard to tell how much damage was done, but Koh Phi Phi National Park chief, Prayoon Phongphan, says he thinks 20% of the coral around the island was damaged.

“At this stage, we do not know how much of the reef was damaged, but the reef is home to important coral, including staghorn coral, and was a popular dive site for tourists.”

Large

PHOTO: Wikipedia

Koh Mae Urai is a unique local dive spot with 2 tunnels lined with soft and hard corals, according to Lonely Planet. When the current isn’t too strong and the visibility is good, Koh Mae Urai is “the most beautiful dive site in the Ao Nang area with number soft coral as well as seahorses”, according to Krabi Magazine.

For now, the area around the island is closed off and boat operators are warned not to approach the site until marine officials can inspect the island’s structure and be sure of the safety for divers and visitors.

“Please be careful. Boat operators must not approach the site. It can be dangerous… Park officers will mark off the area with buoys with a sign clearly explaining no entry to the sealed-off area.”

SOURCE: Phuket News

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Environment

New delivery application focuses on reducing Thailand’s food waste

Caitlin Ashworth

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New delivery application focuses on reducing Thailand’s food waste | The Thaiger

The following story was sent to The Thaiger from the Yindii, a business focused on sustainability and reducing waste produced from the food industry.

Yindii, a Thai anti-food-waste startup, launches a mobile application designed to match hungry, deal-seeking Bangkok residents with environmentally-conscious restaurants, grocery stores and cafes offering delicious food that could otherwise go to waste. Through its discounted “flash sales,” Yindii helps battle an escalating societal problem while enabling restaurants to gain potentially lost revenue.

Yindii’s mobile application is designed to be a direct-to-consumer platform created for restaurants and cafes who can create exclusive and immediate “Happy Hour Deals” offers regularly, with up to discount from 50 to 70%. Once a Yindii box offer is published, Yindii users can then purchase the Yindii box before heading to the restaurant to collect their items or getting them delivered. Transactions are completed electronically.

Consumers can discover what is inside when they open their surprise gift box. Aside from the savings – and committing to the reduction of food waste – consumers benefit from the app by connecting with their favourite food joints to easily find highly discounted items.

“33% of all food produced globally is wasted or lost every year. That is close to a billion and a half tons which is never consumed, accounting for 8% of the greenhouse gas emissions around the globe, 4 times more polluting than the airline industry. All this is an ecological disaster!”

“The growing problem of food waste is challenging to solve for endless reasons including logistics, the complexities of short-lived items and the lack of a set market, which is what we are working to help solve – with a simple system for people and restaurants of surplus food to connect and enact.” – Yindii founder and tech entrepreneur Louis-Alban Batard-Dupre

“All the food available on Yindii is delicious and untouched, coming from premium places, that just cannot wait for tomorrow to be eaten. Think about pastries in coffee shops or fresh meals in restaurants. Our community, the Food Waste Fighters, can rescue the food and provide access to quality meals at an affordable price.”

For the first 100 users who download the app, Yindii is offering free delivery up to 5km from any store with the code: SAVETHEPLANET.

Available for download on Apple’s app store for iOS devices and on Google Play for Android devices, the Yindii app features an initial group of restaurants and cafes including: Sofitel Sukhumvit, Veganerie, Ohana Poke, Broccoli Revolution, Delifrance, Sunshine Market, Banana Warrior, among others.

New delivery application focuses on reducing Thailand's food waste | News by The Thaiger

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Environment

Bangkok residents not satisfied with floodwater management-Nida Poll

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Bangkok residents not satisfied with floodwater management-Nida Poll | The Thaiger

Bangkok residents are largely unsatisfied with the floodwater management in the capital, according to a recent poll. The National Institute of Development Administration conducted the poll on October 6-7 with 1,322 respondents from various levels of education and occupations.

Almost 60% of people say they are not satisfied with 33% of those saying poor preparation and flood management contributed to the dissatisfaction. Almost 27% say they are totally dissatisfied because the BMA was very slow to drain floodwaters, leaving some areas flooded for extended periods of time.

However, almost 31% say they were “quite satisfied” with the BMA’s preparations with 9% being “very satisfied” as they reported some areas were not flooded at all. 40% of respondents said they are confident in the BMA’s flood prevention strategy while a majority, 59% said they are not.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post
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