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Plastic, infectious waste surges due to pandemic

Plastic, infectious waste surges due to pandemic

THAILAND: The jump in food delivery orders during the COVID-19 pandemic has caused the volume of plastic and infectious waste to spike, according to an environmental situation report presented to the cabinet yesterday (June 15).

CoronavirusCOVID-19environmenthealth
By Bangkok Post

Wednesday 16 June 2021, 10:15AM


Eateries and food delivery service operators are being urged to find a way to reduce the use of plastic packaging. Photo: Somchai Poomlard/ Bangkok Post

Eateries and food delivery service operators are being urged to find a way to reduce the use of plastic packaging. Photo: Somchai Poomlard/ Bangkok Post

After the report was presented, deputy government spokeswoman, Traisuree Taisaranakul admitted the demand for meal deliveries had risen as more people were forced to work from home due to the pandemic.

Most of the food, she said, was packed in plastic containers, the majority of which ends up in the rubbish bin.

In addition, the amount of infectious waste, which requires special treatment prior to disposal, has also increased in parallel with the rising number of COVID-19 cases in recent months - especially in communities where many people were being quarantined.

As such, the deputy spokesperson urged eateries and food delivery service operators to find a way to reduce the use of plastic packaging. Furthermore, she said, consumers should get into the habit of sorting their rubbish.

Infectious waste, such as used face masks, should be double-wrapped in plastic bags, which should be tightly tied and clearly labelled before they are put out for collection. Ms Traisuree added the annual report noted several concerns which require close monitoring this year.

They include a possible increase in forest fires, lower reserves of usable water in dams and reservoirs, worse air pollution in urban areas.

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Christy Sweet | 16 June 2021 - 15:11:39

Somewhere near Chiang Mai is a woman making bio degradable food containers from rice stalks, also eliminating the burn- offs by farmers . Maybe Thailand could be a hub for this sort  of innovation instead of just a hub of hubs that never quite get.. hubbing.  

Kurt | 16 June 2021 - 11:22:32

Reading what a Government spokes woman is saying/suggest what people should do tells us that the Government exactly knows what the big problem is. So, Government can steps in: Forbid plastic in food delivery. Put colored  rubbish containers at usual places.  For different waste, different colors. Start separated waste collection from restaurants/hotels. No separation, no collection. 

 

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