Around 1,400 people attended the “Phuket Island Big Clean”, part of the global “Clean up the World” weekend, which is held in September every year.
Environmental group SEEK co-founder Nick Anthony said between 750 and 800 bags, or around 8,000 kg of trash had been collected.
“It is a bit surprising as we had expected a reduction. Volumes were higher than I expected, although having a massive storm the week before added to volumes. There was noticeably less plastic, meaning roadside cleaning is working well and reducing household trash.”
Mr Anthony said around 19.6km of shoreline was cleaned – more than 70 per cent of the island’s main beaches – with 7km not cleaned.
He said one particularly good example was the students of HeadStart International School Phuket, who, along with their teacher Aurelie, collected 20 bags of garbage at Layan Beach.
Of these, 14 were full of items suitable for art projects (bottles, caps, ropes, polystyrene, shoes, one fishing float and 160 disposable lighters). Two bags were recyclables, and four bags were garbage.
“It’s very positive waste breakdown and waste utilisation,” Mr Anthony said.
He said art projects using the recycled items would be done by Green Clubs around the island.