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Songkhla, Thailand – On International Coastal Cleanup Day, around 60 volunteers from the Songkhla Forum, Beach for Life, and Greenpeace together cleaned up the beach at Laem Son On in Songkhla province. The groups also conducted a plastic brand audit and collected data on plastic types and brands found on the beach. The activities were part of a global initiative meant to highlight corporations and fast consuming goods (FMCG) brands’ responsibility on single-used plastic, widely used in their packaging, specifically for FMCGs to to phase out single-use plastic in their products.
Pichmol Rugrod, Plastic Project Leader for Greenpeace Thailand said:
“From mountains to seas, we find alarming amounts of plastic in the environment. Plastic pollution is one of the most pressing issues in Thailand, affecting people and wildlife. It’s heartbreaking to see animals dying, particularly endangered marine species choking to death because of plastic. Clearly, something must change and the most viable solution is to stop producing plastic at the source.”
Apisak Tassanee, Founder and coordinator of Beach for Life group said:
“In Songkhla province, we normally see a ton of trash in our shores, mostly water bottles, sachets, and fishing equipment etc. Some are washed ashore, while others are left here by tourists which is problematic as it impacts the marine and beach environment.
“People are more aware of plastic pollution and want to be part of the solution. Beach for Life, Songkhla Forum, together with the academe and local civil society have collaborated to design beach zoning to reduce single-use plastic in Samila-Chalatat beach.”
The plastic brand audit is part of #BreakFreefromPlastic global movement which aims to reduce single-use plastics and to push for lasting solutions to the plastic pollution crisis. This is the 3rd brand audit activity in Thailand after last September’s brand audit in Doi Suthep in Chiang Mai, and Wonnapa beach in Chonburi province in 2018.
“There is a growing consciousness among consumers about their plastic consumption and many have pledged to live a plastic-free lifestyle. It is now time for companies to act and do their part to come up with concrete measures to tackle the plastic crisis,” concluded Pichmol.
The results from the Songkhla brand audit will be collected and compiled along with other brand audits happening around the world, with the intention of identifying what type of plastic is most used and which brands are among the top plastic polluters. A summary report will be launched in October.
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