By The Nation
Traditional “pinto thao” food carriers are to replace single-use plastics at national parks on land and at sea in a bid to help protect the environment, Tourism and Sports Minister Weerasak Kowsurat said on Tuesday.
Weerasak said he had earlier discussed the use of the traditional carriers with Natural Resources and Environment Minister General Surasak Karnjanarat, and had invited Sanan Angubolkul, the chairman and chief executive officer of Srithai Superware, to carry out a corporate-social-responsibility project to donate durable melamine “pinto thao” for national parks to hand out or rent out to visitors wishing to carry food into parks or zoos, as an environment-friendly alternative to single-use plastic containers.
The move follows the implementation since August 12 of the National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation Department’s unprecedented initiative to ban the use of disposable plastic containers, cutlery and straws at all 154 national parks and seven zoos.
The parks agency’s goal is to reduce the amount of plastic waste by 3 million items per year under that initiative.
Despite their convenience and resulting popularity, plastics are harmful to the environment and many end up in the oceans where they kill sea mammals, turtles and other marine life who mistake them for food or become tangled in them.
An estimated 45 quadrillion pieces of plastic are thrown away every year in Thailand.