August 27, 2020 | 11:22 AM

Dialogue Forum 5 discusses surge in plastic waste post COVID-19

BANGKOK(NNT) - Environmental academics have raised concerns about a significant increase in plastic waste from delivery services. With one person generating about 1.15 kilograms of waste daily, they have called on the government to take action.


Environmental organizations have come together at the Dialogue Forum 5, where they discussed the significant increase in plastic waste due to the COVID-19 lockdown, and brainstormed ideas for a sustainable plastic waste management roadmap.


The Thailand Environment Institute’s (TEI) President Wijarn Simachaya says the amount of plastic waste generated during the COVID-19 lockdown has increased to an average of 1.15 kilogram per person per day, even though the overall volume remains low because of the absence of tourists.


The increase in plastic waste generated per person was signficantly contributed to by delivery services, especially in Bangkok where the waste from delivery services accounts for 62 percent of all waste generated during the lockdown.


Delivery waste has since been reduced to 30 percent as restaurants are now open for dine-in customers, however the lack of proper waste disposal, continues to result in some litter ending up in rivers and the sea.


The TEI chief has urged the government to take a collaborative approach to promoting systematic waste management, which will require effort from manufacturers, consumers, and waste handlers.


Ms Pichamon Rakrod, Greenpeace Thailand’s head of the campaign against plastic waste, said today that manufacturers must consider reducing and even stoping the production of single-use plastic items, as manufacturers are considered the source of this refuse.


She has called for manufacturers to incorporate innovations and technologies to use more environmentally friendly materials in their products, while dismissing the claim that Bioplastics may help reduce the amount of plastic waste ending up in the environment despite its bio-degradable feature, as these plastics once degraded still leave microplastics that contaminate the environment.


Other academics at the forum have suggested the government adopt successful plastic management policies from foreign countries, with the roadmap ultimately enacted as a law that can be practically enforced.


They have suggested the use of economics tactics to help change consumers’ behaviour, such as the introduction of a plastic tax.


Thailand’s current target is to recycle 100 percent of its plastic waste by 2030, with a plastics management roadmap drafted for 2018-2031.


Information and Source

Reporter : Tanakorn Sangiam
Rewriter : Rodney McNeil
National News Bureau & Public Relations :
By NNT  |