Connect with us

Opinion

Phuket Opinion: Deputizing the masses

Legacy Phuket Gazette

Published 

 on 

PHUKET: Everyone should get behind two recent appeals for public participation in protecting our marine and coastal resources.

Earlier this month, the Phuket Marine Office encouraged the public to provide photographic evidence to bring to justice people so ignorant that they actually still dump used petrochemicals directly into the sea surrounding our resort island. The entreaty came with the promise of a tidy, 10,000 baht reward if all of the conditions were met (story here).

Two weeks later, Department of Marine and Coastal Resources Region 5 Chief Tanet Munnoy urged the public to report illegal fishing activities, especially in designated conservation zones (story here).

His request followed the discovery of an enormous fishing net found, and thankfully removed, by divers at Shark Point (story here).

For an island that depends on its natural resources to support its tourism industry, Phuket has an abysmal environmental conservation record. Huge slum communities with little or no public planning now cover what was pristine mangrove forest just a generation ago; an ever-increasing number of sprawling residential estates continue to spring up, covering vegetation with concrete and producing untreated sewage which flows into the sea, even at our most popular beaches.

Relying on authorities to adequately enforce environmental laws is a failed strategy. The evidence for this assertion is in our faces, and even up our noses, every day. Even the easiest of laws to enforce, such as those that restrict double parking on the congested streets of Phuket Town, seldom if ever result in police action. One city parking attendant recently said that calls to police over such violations so rarely resulted in action that most of their ranks had ceased even trying to contact them at all.

Elsewhere, people tend to follow the rules, not just out of fear of being arrested or fined, but because it is the right thing to do. The Phuket Gazette applauds the dive community for trying to conserve our natural resources and for setting a great example for society at large. But we all need to do a better job at shaming those who break our laws,whether it be by photographing oil dumpers, beeping our horns at those who feel entitled to park their vehicles wherever they want, whenever they want – or even catching police in the act of breaking the very laws they are sworn to uphold.

Fortunately, the technology now exists to deputize the masses. Many of us carry mobile phones with cameras that can directly upload to social media sites, making it possible to report violators in real time.

We have strong environmental laws that need better enforcement, and it is up to each and every one of us to help.

 

Want more Thailand news from the Thaiger family?

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS for instant updates on your mobile
📝️ Join the conversation on Thaiger Talk - discuss news & life in our Thailand forums
📧 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🔔 Subscribe to or Join our YouTube channel for daily video updates

image

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Thailand8 hours ago

Tourism officials eye August reopening under “Pattaya Move On” travel scheme

Thailand9 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Covid vaccine for foreigners, PM “not going anywhere”, Boss update | June 15

Best of9 hours ago

Top 8 Affordable Hotels to stay in Bangkok

Phuket Sandbox July 1st

days
hours
minutes
seconds

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in July - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages in June!

Sponsored by image

Thailand10 hours ago

Central Bankruptcy Court approves Thai Airways debt restructuring plan

Best of10 hours ago

Top 5 secret islands and beaches in Thailand

Best of10 hours ago

5 best national parks in Phuket

Thailand10 hours ago

Australian man arrested for alleged child sex abuse in Thai border town

Best of10 hours ago

10 best fruits and vegetables in Thailand

Thailand10 hours ago

3 dead in 3 truck crash in Surat Thani

Thailand11 hours ago

Bangkok Post and Fazwaz join together to galvanise property listings platform

Bangkok12 hours ago

CCSA has yet to begin talks on lifting alcohol ban at Bangkok restaurants

Coronavirus (Covid-19)12 hours ago

Yala enters lockdown today

Thailand12 hours ago

Thai police say they’ve gathered “strong evidence” on transnational drug trade

Phuket12 hours ago

Indonesian fisherman rescued after 9 days adrift at sea

Thailand13 hours ago

More than 100 cats rescued from owner

Thailand3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism3 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism4 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism4 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8

Trending