Connect with us

Opinion

Opinion: Gov’s ‘war on dirtiness’ a noble aim

Published

 on 

PHUKET: Cleanliness is next to Godliness, as the old saying goes, so it is hard not to agree with new governor Norraphat Plodthong’s stated goal of beautifying Phuket “by our hands”.

Gov Norraphat, set for mandatory retirement from the civil service in just a few months’ time, has understandably had to set his priorities in a practical way. When one really thinks about it, however, declaring war on dirtiness is about as ambitious a goal as any ever stated by a new governor.

It almost makes one wonder: why not just declare victory over entropy and just drop the mic before walking off the stage with those handsome C-12 retirement benefits to enjoy the golden years with?

But more seriously, and as stated in this space numerous times in the past, the trend here in Phuket is one of relentless urbanization, which has proven to be the most powerful driver of ‘dirtiness’ on the planet. Indeed, there are few places anywhere in the world that have been as dramatically transformed over the past few decades as Phuket.

Physical changes to the landscape are the most obvious. The current proliferation of new highway underpasses serves as testament to the fact that Phuket is following in the same developmental path as Bangkok.

This should come as little surprise given that all occupants of the Governor’s mansion, not to mention legions of other Bangkok-based apparatchiks, are all career civil servants appointed in Bangkok.

Rather than taking any real steps to address the root causes of an ever-worsening traffic situation, such as the dire lack of public transport, we see the traffic nightmare gradually taking on the same three-dimensional aspect it now has in the capital.

Any successful ‘war on dirtiness’ will inevitably require a change in the common culture, but there are few indications that such a change is forthcoming in the Bangkok-led, top-down culture that is Thai society.

As can be seen in some Western countries, urbanization can be carried out in ways that minimize negative impacts – not on the natural environment itself, but on the city dwellers who inevitably displace it.

At the end of the day, and as recognized by our new governor, any real change has to come from the ground up – if we can find any ground that hasn’t been covered with concrete yet.

 

Get more from The Thaiger

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.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

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

Follow Thaiger by email:

Bangkok Travel7 hours ago

Ari All Link is a must-attend skill-up workshop for Ari people

Cannabis News9 hours ago

Anutin responds to photo of cannabis smoking kids on Pattaya Beach

Education10 hours ago

Thai student allegedly raped by Hyderabad U professor

Sponsored16 hours ago

Marketing in Thailand as a Foreigner: Volume #3 The Marketing Noises

Tourism10 hours ago

Phuket welcomes 6,730 flights in December

Tourism11 hours ago

Thailand tourism predicted at 80% of pre-Covid in 2023

Transport13 hours ago

Bangkok airport expansion prepares for bidding war

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Crime13 hours ago

Child Protection Foundation leader faces child labour charges

Road deaths13 hours ago

Red-Bull hit-and-run prosecutor dismissed

Transport14 hours ago

Phuket flight cancellation due to earlier cancelled flight, runway maintenance

Election14 hours ago

Pheu Thai Party under fire as Tuhao-Shinawatra connection exposed

Video14 hours ago

THAIGER PODCAST | Ep.14 Saving Thai cats one paw at a time

Tourism16 hours ago

Bullets-in-bag Israeli given 18 months in Thailand

Video1 day ago

Thailand News Today | 9 year olds smoke cannabis on Pattaya Beach in Thailand

Economy1 day ago

Thai baht soars to six-month high against US dollar

Pattaya1 day ago

Motorcycle taxi riders rally against unlicensed ride-share app drivers in Pattaya

Thailand1 year ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand2 years ago

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

Tourism2 years ago

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

Phuket2 years ago

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

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

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

Tourism2 years ago

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

Thailand2 years ago

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

Thailand2 years ago

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

Thailand2 years ago

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

Thailand2 years ago

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

Thailand2 years ago

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

Thailand2 years ago

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

Thailand2 years ago

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

Thailand2 years ago

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

Trending