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Smoke on Thai beaches this high season and face jail or 100,000 baht fine

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Smoke on Thai beaches this high season and face jail or 100,000 baht fine

 

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Smoking will be banned on 20 major Thai beaches from November. And smokers who flout the law will face a year's jail or a 100,000 baht fine....or both.

 

The strict penalties are in line with existing ordinances concerning causing damage to the environment.

 

Studies have shown that cigarette butts are a major cause of environmental damage not just to the sea and beaches but Thailand in general.

 

And the government - in a step by step by step approach - is targeting smokers as it tries to rid the country of an unwanted tag as one of the biggest environmental polluters in the world.

 

No mention was made about smokers' health in a Daily News story - the Thais are getting more concerned about the well being of the environment.

 

Smoking will be banned in November as the tourist high season gets rolling in many high profile locations - these include all beaches in Pattaya, Jomtien, Phuket, Cha-Am, Hua Hin and Bang Saen. Others mentioned in the story were in Pangnga and Samila in Songkhla, Mae Phim and Laem Singh.

 

Environment ministry expert Jatuporn Burutphat said that studies - particularly one in Phuket - showed that cigarette butts made up a major proportion of all trash on beaches and in the sea. Surveys revealed up to 138,000 butts on each 2.5 kilometer stretch of Thai coast.

 

Nationwide there are thought to be 100 million cigarettes discarded each day. When leached of their harmful contents by water, potentially deadly substances such as cadmium and lead enter the environment and food chain.

 

No new laws need to be made. The authorities will use ordinances passed in 2015 about damage to the environment. These allow for one year prison terms and 100,000 baht fines or both.

 

Jatuporn said that people will not be allowed to walk along the beach and smoke. A certain proportion of smokers' cigarettes would always end up on the beach if that was permitted, he said.

 

So smokers will have to stub out their cigarettes at places that will be set up before entry to beaches.

 

Authorities will be on hand to enforce the law, he said.

 

Also plans are being made to enforce the no smoking law on all passenger boats and pleasure boats in Thai waters as cigarettes discarded directly into the sea are a major problem.

 

Jatuporn said that Thailand would host a major ASEAN environment conference in Phuket from October 22 to 23 in which sea and beach trash issues will be top of the agenda.

 

He said that he was determined to do something serious about the tag of "sixth worst polluter oif the ocean in the world" that has been applied to Thailand this year.

 

Source: Daily News

 
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-- © Copyright Thai Visa News 2017-10-10

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Replace the words  "cigarette butt" with "plastic bags/bottles" and maybe Thailand could do something about environmental pollution.

 

I don't smoke, but I can imagine that an ordinary cigarette would disappear quite quickly as tobacco and paper are organic. Filters on the other hand may be more difficult to get rid of.

 

Also, I have noticed that most places that have deck chairs provide ash trays for the customers.

 

I have a feeling that this is just another way to sting the farangs.

 

Edit: Sorry, I didn't see the bit about Cadmium and lead the first time I read the article.

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oh dear, how about a general clamp down on all types of littering, if I smoke anywhere I use an ashtray or a bin and that includes on a beach, if I have litter it goes in a bin, I am all for cleaning up and stopping people littering but stopping people smoking on a beach adds absolutely nothing to this, how many April 1st's are there in Thailand, they seem to have one every week.

 

This is stupidity beyond belief

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It's ok to bring tons of plastic bags, bottles, cuttlery, etc. with you to the beach and just leave it all there after you've finished your pic-nic. That doesn't cause any environmental damage at all and it makes the beaches look more "suwai". 

 

They never seem to get anything right here...

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This is an excellent step in the right direction, but it's too easy to see it for what it really is....  And Thailand, please enforce the already existing laws against littering which plagues the nation.

 

This stinks somewhat of a 'easy target'... much in the same way as the Sukhumvit 2000 baht fines where only foreigners are caught meanwhile a multitude of street vendors litter the streets, plug up the drains with fat etc...  I can see this going much the same way. 

It seems to me that there is an incredibly hypocritical holier than thou approach whereby quick revenue can be collected from tourists who have no idea that smoking on a beach is even remotely considered given the obvious and blatant littering going on all around. 

 

On the face of it seems like an extremely xenophobic approach blaming the foreigners... which I'm sure some are to blame, but taking this individually without addressing the other major littering issues comes with a putrid stench.

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Of course as people mentioned before all littering should be addressed at all places, not just cigarettes at the beach (and of course the government / shops etc. should be responsible to put enough trash cans), but that's at least a start. And besides of the littering aspect i also don't want to smell the smoke of the cigarettes, so i welcome this step

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When leached of their harmful contents by water, potentially deadly substances such as cadmium and lead enter the environment and food chain.

Does this mean that banning cigarettes on beaches will remove these deadly substances from Thai chocolate, or is that an unrelated issue? :)

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Just when you think the authorities can't get any more illogical, and look any more stupid.... I should really drink more before reading the news here ?

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A good start would be with the buses and trucks that chuck out so much smoke it takes 5,000 families in the UK to  recycle their rubbish for 5 years to save the Earth the same as these buses drive 100 yards.

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How about people who smoke unfiltered cigarettes? Those are biodegradable.
Will cigars and pipe smoking be likewise illegal? The lead article does not differentiate.

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37 minutes ago, webfact said:

Smoke on Thai beaches this high season and face jail or 100,000 baht fine

 

That'll really draw in droves of tourists...

 

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12 minutes ago, jackdd said:

Of course as people mentioned before all littering should be addressed at all places, not just cigarettes at the beach, but that's at least a start. And besides of the littering aspect i also don't want to smell the smoke of the cigarettes, so i welcome this step

Agreed.  All littering, all places and, I would like to add, all times.  Why just high season?  The obvious answer to that one is "a major ASEAN environment conference in Phuket from October 22 to 23 in which sea and beach trash issues will be top of the agenda."  Must be seen to be doing some thing by then.

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So...while in Jomtien, I will have to cross the road to have a cigarette then go back to my deckchair for a sip of beer? Oh, wait! Didn't they outlaw drinking alcohol on the beach as well?

 

Never mind then. Better to find a restaurant across from the beach and give them your business instead. Stay tune for complaints from beach chair operators loosing all their customers.

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