Diving Against Debris
Trash in our oceans is a big problem, and Thailand is facing it too. From busy cities like Bangkok to beautiful beaches in Koh Tao, there’s too much plastic causing trouble. But there’s hope! Groups like PADI Aware are helping out with the Dive Against Debris campaign. Our environmental partners at The Coral Tribe conduct regular Beach and Dive Site Cleans to keep our oceans healthy and free from debris.
The Plastic Issue
Thailand is growing fast, and that’s good for many reasons. But it also means more plastic is being used, like bags and bottles. These things are easy to use, but they’re causing a big mess for our environment. Recycling is not as effective as it could be with an infrastructure that still needs improving.
Rivers Bringing Trash
Rivers in Thailand are like roads for plastic. When people throw plastic away, it travels through rivers and ends up in the sea. The Chao Phraya River, for example, carries a lot of plastic to the Gulf of Thailand.
What the Government is Doing
The Thai government is trying to help. They’re making rules about using less plastic and trying to teach people about it. But it’s not easy. Some people still don’t know or don’t follow the rules.
Tourists and Trash
Many people visit Thailand for holidays, and that’s awesome. But sometimes, they leave too much trash behind. Everyone, tourists and locals, needs to work together to keep Thailand clean. Stopping plastic in Thailand needs a big effort. We need to follow the rules, help clean up, and use less plastic. PADI Aware’s Dive Against Debris is showing us how divers can make a difference. Let’s learn from them and keep Thailand beautiful for a long time.
Simple steps to decrease your “footprint” when you are in Thailand:
- Bring Your Own Bag:
- Carry a reusable bag when you go shopping. This reduces the need for plastic bags, which often end up as waste. Some places on the island now charge for plastic bags, so save money and the environment by bringing your own.
- Refuse Single-Use Straws:
- Say no to plastic straws when you order drinks. If you prefer using a straw, bring a reusable one made of materials like stainless steel or bamboo. Some restaurants on our island have already switched to reusable straws.
- Reusable Water Bottles:
- Invest in a reusable water bottle to avoid buying single-use plastic bottles. Refill it throughout the day at our free water refill stations around the dive centre to stay hydrated and reduce plastic waste.
- Pack Your Lunch Sustainably:
- Use a lunchbox or reusable containers instead of disposable plastic bags or wraps. This also helps keep your food fresh.
- Choose Products with Less Packaging:
- When shopping, opt for products with minimal packaging. Consider buying in bulk to reduce the amount of plastic packaging you bring home.
- Bring Your Own Cup:
- If you enjoy hot or cold beverages on the go, carry a reusable cup.
- Avoid Disposable Cutlery:
- When eating out or ordering takeout, say no to disposable cutlery. Carry your own reusable utensils or you can purchases a set of travel cutlery from our dive centre.
- Shop Mindfully:
- Be conscious of your purchasing decisions. Choose products made from sustainable materials and support businesses that are committed to reducing plastic use.
- Sign up:
- Look for environmentally focused diving courses or participate in clean up events to get involved with helping to collect data and trash to improve our beaches and oceans.
- Choose Eco-Friendly Alternatives:
- Look for eco-friendly alternatives to common plastic items, such as toothbrushes made of bamboo or reusable food wraps instead of plastic cling film.
- Educate and Inspire Others:
- Share your knowledge about reducing plastic use with friends and family. Inspire others to make small changes in their daily routines to collectively make a big impact.
Remember, every small effort counts, and by incorporating these easy steps into your daily life, you can contribute to a cleaner Koh Tao and your own home too!