Plastic Rebels in Thailand.
Since November 6th we are on this small island in the Andaman Sea, Thailand now. Koh Phayam is still a very un-touristic island and the high season has not started yet. At the moment there are only a few tourists here – and it should not be too crowded. It is considered the perfect place for Ozeankind because we are looking for plastic waste on the island of Koh Phayam.
So we came here for a reason: to leave the island cleaner than we found it – as always when we are in any place in the world!
To speak clear this means – we remove as much plastic waste as possible from nature, especially from the beach and the sea.
We live on Koh Phayam in a small bungalow complex in the east of the island, near the pier. The beach is less than ten meters from our bed and the hotel owners even have a way to separate the garbage and recycle it in the best local possible way. Almost perfect”
So our goal for the next 14 days here is to collect garbage. Every single day. Twice a day we are happy to free the 400 meter long sandy beach at the edge of the jungle from washed and discarded plastic waste.
So every day looks almost the same: get, have a breakfast and “go for a walk”, as we like to call it. Only not with a dog, but only armed with collecting bags. And of course we don’t pick up dog excrement, but still we find a lot of crap here, which humans intentionally or unknowingly threw into nature and thus inevitably into the ocean.
The ocean is often something like the final destination for most of our plastic waste – and there is no doubt about one thing: if we humans, tourists or locals do not pick it up, it will stay there forever.
Plastic is never gone! It is just somewhere else. Especially here in Thailand.
Why is there so much plastic in Thailand?
Thailand is one of the five countries in the world responsible for easily 60% of the plastic waste in our ocean. In case you wanna know more about it, for instance why it is like it is, we´d be happy if you read our post about it. And unfortunately, there’s no doubt about it. We see that every single day. Unfortunately. There are unbelievable amounts of plastic here and people also use a lot of plastic, especially single-use plastic.
We do not want to imagine what it looks like at the crowded, way more popular beaches of Phuket, Samui, Pangan etc.. Already on our small island Koh Phayam there is so much garbage and here the tourism and the plastic doesn’t play such a big role yet.
With every new flood, new parts of plastic are washed up. We often find empty plastic bottles made of PET, as well as lonely flip flops, small glass bottles, pieces of plastic bags, straws and other plastic packaging stuff.
What have we done so far?
Within the last six days, we’ve picked up almost 80 kilos (exactly 79,4 kg) of plastic waste from “our” beach. If you now ask yourself how we want to know the exact weight … we got ourselves a small suitcase scale in South Africa. Each garbage bag is weighed, so we have an exact value for our Counter (you can actually find the counter on our start page).
Last week we have cleaned another 98,2 kg of plastic waste. It’s amazing how much garbage there is found on this relatively small beach. The waves have washed everything to the back where the trees begin to grow. There it lay well hidden under and between all the wood and leaves, certainly for several months already.
Even if it is sometimes a bit frustrating to walk along the beach the next day and again much too much finds its way into the garbage bag. What’s the alternative? There is none. Yes, you feel powerless about this huge global problem. Nevertheless, there is no alternative to do nothing and continue as before.
177,57 kg we’ve both taken off the beach in the past 14 days only. Even if it is only a drop, it´s important. It makes a difference.
The mission of Ozeankind:
We don’t “just” travel through this beautiful world. No, we want to remove plastic waste from the beaches and directly from the ocean – while traveling. We want to give the paradises of this world back their beautiful face and show that we can all together change the look of our world to the positive – and we can do that when we get up and take action. Which brings me to our vision:
The vision of Ozeankind:
With your help, we want to remove a minimum of 50,000 kg of plastic waste from our environment by 2022 and at the same time convince one million people to live without disposable plastic products and to reconsider and minimize their plastic consumption.
And you can actively support us in this. Either you go out into nature whenever you like, whether at home or on holiday on the beach. You collect all the plastic that doesn’t belong there, you send us a message with a picture and the weight of the garbage. If you don’t have a way at hand, make a good guess. So your contribution can directly go on counter.
Or you can join one of our international rebel cleanups. Just visit our Facebook page … here we will inform you regularly about the upcoming cleanups. By the way, the first event was on November 15th. Who was part of it? Read about it in our article.