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Plastic bags found by marine biologists in the stomach of a dead leatherback turtle off Phuket in March

How Phuket Aims to Beat Plastic

Thursday, June 16, 2011
PHUKET: Phuket will celebrate HM The King's birthday this year with the distribution of 840,000 free cloth bags that should help to end Phuket's dependence on plastic bags and create more environmental awareness.

Tesco Senior Vice President Dr Darmp Sukontasap joined Phuket Energy Office Director Jirasak Dhamawej and Phuket enviro advocate Nick Anthony of Indigo Real Estate at a meeting today with Phuket Governor Tri Augkaradacha at Provincial Hall in Phuket City.

Khun Jirasak said the 840,000 bags - more than one for every person on Phuket - would be distributed close to HM The King's 84th birthday on December 5 around Phuket, in a first for Thailand.

Tesco and other supermarket brands would be able to place their individual logos on the cloth bags.

MoUs were also being negotiated with Phuket's resorts to reduce the number of plastic bags in circulation. Makro had already done away with plastic bags and other retail outlets and supermarkets on the island were likely to follow, Khun Jirasak said.

The aim was to reduce Phuket's daily garbage of 600 tonnes to 500 tonnes by obliterating plastic bags and encouraging recycling, he added.

Dr Darmp said Tesco was keen to support the moves on Phuket and would eventually charge customers for plastic bags. Rescycling bins would also become a feature of Tesco carparks later in the year, he added.

Other projects are aimed at making Phuket a ''low carbon'' island and wind-generated power, along with solar energy, had already been effective on two island off Phuket, Koh Racha and Koh Lon, the meeting heard.

Comments

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yes ! good action ! and bravo Makro; it's only to re-educate everyone...40 years ago my gran-ma use to go market with a basket, and tissus bag. The only bags wich should be free and largely distributed are the condoms ! but money is money...........

Posted by serge on June 16, 2011 19:02

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Here we go again, how many times have we heard about this and how bad plastic bag is, for me it looks like nobody give a damn i dont see many use their own bags

Posted by southbound on June 16, 2011 19:04

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Even in China (the first destroyers of the modern world) the plastic bags arent' allowed yet since many years!! Are they waiting in Phuket for forbidding the first reason of turtles killing and joint a modern and green Phuket???

Posted by Dave on June 16, 2011 19:45

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Plastic bags are THE problem. Because so much garbage is coming in plastic bags. So just give the people cloth bags and the garbage problem is dealt with. Super.

But the thing with the recycling bin is more the way to go. Plastic bags in recycling bins are pretty useful stuff, if the recycling process is thought through. As it is often with this window dressing policies, they like to jump too short. If every street vendor will start to use banana leafs again, you will have to protect your banana plants in the garden... *ggg

Posted by Lena on June 16, 2011 22:03

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Appreciate the effort and think it would help. But human nature is people will take the bags because they are free and not use them because they have no incentive. These stores already have built in mechanisms for ending bags if they want to. Far simpler and FAR more effective if the grocery stores just added a couple of bagless check out lines, where there was always someone there to check you out and were strict about it. People will do anything to get through line quicker. Then add more lines as the customer became attuned to it. In addition they could offer a small discount if you bring your own bag. I think these things would clear this up pretty quickly.

A little staff education would help as well. There are certain stores (I rarely go to) that when I show up with my bags at the counter they wig out.

Posted by Martin on June 17, 2011 11:09

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Someone should tell the tesco check out girls who pack your shopping in three plastic bags when one would be enough

Posted by Anonymous on June 17, 2011 12:00

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why can't charge for any plastic bag 1-5-10 baht depending from dimension?? For sure the used number dramatically will go down!!

Posted by Richard on June 17, 2011 13:07

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Good idea, however

I suspect most plastic bags come from ubiquitous street vendors. Sad thing about this is, these are usually popular or scenic locations. Food consumed or half consumed and bags left on the ground to "disappear".

Posted by Better phuket on June 17, 2011 14:23

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Nice idea, but it won't solve the problem with floating plastic bags in the sea.
These bags is mainly small bags used for ready made food.
Eat and dump the garbage - it requires a change in mentality to drop that nasty habit.

Posted by Hotel Owner in Patong on June 18, 2011 14:18


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