The following is a mail from a Pattaya News reader. Their thoughts are their own. The Pattaya News notes that although some beaches, like Jomtien, has trash cans they have been moved across the road which is inconvenient for many people or not around at all like other beaches.
I am a Canadian expat living in Pattaya and working in Chonburi over the last two years. I live in a condo by the Wongamat beach area. (both my wife and I are from Canada and work here)
I must say that the Wongamat beach area has greatly improved for swimming over the last 2 years. When I first arrived in Pattaya in January 2019 and began swimming in the water opposite my condo, I constantly ran into plastic bags, plastic bottles and all other debris. A disgusting experience.
I don’t know if it is the lack of tourists throwing garbage into the water and onto the beach, but the garbage is going down. (although I did bump into a floating door the other day) Very strange to see such a large object bobbing in the water. I don’t mind running into an occasional leaf, stick or other natural object when I am swimming, but we have to keep it “all natural”.
I usually pick up any litter that I see on the beach or on the water in the area where I swim and deposit the garbage into my condo garbage bin. My concern is the lack of any public garbage containers or recycling bins along the beach. When we had many expats staying at my condo, I would often see my fellow neighbours picking up the plastic bottles and other debris on the beach and depositing them into our condo trash can. Good for them!
I don’t know who in the local government that we can appeal to, but I believe that if we placed frequent litter containers alone both the Wongamat and Beach road beach, people would be inclined to throw their garbage and any garbage that they see into the garbage cans.
There is definitely a growing awareness of cleaning up our beaches. Where I work, we have volunteer groups that go out in teams to clean up various beach fronts. The Thais are definitely becoming more sensitive to cleaning up their environment as most of these groups are all Thai’s that freely volunteer.
I get lectured at work by my fellow Thai friends for using plastic straws and I am glad to see their concern.
In summary, we need to encourage our local government that looks after the Pattaya Beach road area, Wongamat beach and all other surrounding beaches to maintain a litter and recycling container program.
I am convinced that regularly spaced containers would encourage people to place their garbage there and also encourage people to pick up the litter that they see on the beach and place it into the containers. This program would also involve a workforce that regularly empties the litter and recycling containers. Perhaps people unemployed due to the pandemic dilemma could find work in this area.
I believe that this is particularly important as the Covid-19 pandemic eases and more people return to the beautiful beaches of Thailand.
Tourists seeing regularly placed litter containers and recycling bins will feel good that they are visiting a country that cares and takes action on cleaning up the garbage in their beachfronts.
We all want to visit a clean beach, devoid of used soda cans, bags and plastic bottles. If Thailand does not show the world that it is actively working on cleaning up its beaches and oceans, the word will spread internationally and discourage more tourists from visiting. The world is becoming increasingly sensitive to cleaning up the environment and they will “protest” by not visiting countries that do not actively work towards making the ocean and beaches cleaner.
Thank you, Robert