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Going Green Radio Show #1 Plastic Oceans



Every Saturday 5-7pm with special guests, interviews and going green.

Climate change, population, Indian ocean, Andaman Sea, Plastic bags,

clean seas, changes, green issues

Phuket 89.5 fm


The Radio show : Going Green # 1

Plastic beaches.. the start of our problem

Saturday 30th October 2012, 5-7 PM

Special guest

Luke Remmers

Luke is a big wave Californian surfer who was a career San Fran fireman before hanging up his hat for board shorts and island life. Luke is an ocean advocate, cleaning beaches, educating kids as part of the Tommy the Turtle show and loves nature. His daughter at 1.5 years is already surfing and a likely future Thai champ! 

Todays discussion was about the beach, we discussed plastic on beaches, trash in the ocean and the Kamala and Surin clean beach programs and the future of our oceans given plastification.

Reflect, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, reTweet


Currently the world us just under 400ppm in CO2 emmissions,  and heading to 450ppm but we should be heading the other way, decreasing towards 350ppm.

The UK supported Japan and Russia in potentially delaying an agreement at the climate change meeting till 2018/2020. The meeting takes place in Durban at the end of November.

Of 7bn population 1.3bn do not have access to electricity. That catch up is dooming.

The UK is saying that they are expecting 4 degree C increase by 2060


Pacific Gyre about to be hit by Japan tsunami debris, as much as 5mn tonnes, a task force is being prepared.


Phuket launch no single use plastic Dec 5th. by end Feb all major retailers will adopt one day per week NO Plastic bags, and will aim to be plastic bag free.

You can register at the Phuket Provincial hall from Dec 5th to pick up a reuse bag with 20 plastic bag returns

NEWS: UGANDA electric car, the KIIRA, built by 25 students whilst working on an electric bus… Phuket needs electric cars and busses.


Rick O Barry received a humanitarian award for supporting the stopping of dolphin slaughter at Taiiji in Japan.




Plastic Oceans

Marine litter in particular plastic waste is a global problem. The vast majority of plastic waste is destined for land fill sites which limits the impact through containment however does not solve the problem. A significant proportion of plastic gets into the water course through bin spill off, litter and washed through drains into the oceans. Global currents push waste around the world and distribute it along all coastlines, populated and remote.

46% of plastics float, according to the EPA and can drift for years, until, not unlike water getting sucked into a sink hole get caught in a circular spin that concentrates waste into large areas in the middle of the oceans that are called “GYRES”. Wind, wave action and sunlight UV breakdown the plastics during this journey which makes the pieces small and smaller, eventually microscopic, but still plastic.

The North pacific Gyre is probably the best known as it is the size of Texas and well documented but others including our own Indian ocean are increasing at alarming rates. This plastic soup is likely to worsen quickly given the development and populations of India, Bangladesh, Indonesia and Thailand however the good news is that we are not impacted by US waste which is probably historically the worst, and importantly plastic bag reduction plans in India, Bangladesh and Thailand are coming into force and are the sharp end of a sustainability sword which have the capacity to reduce waste overflows quickly.

The Bay of Bengal Large Marine Environment project that is highlighted on this site is an important cross border 10 year program that is in year three of coordinating sustainability.

Thailand’s own coastline along the Andaman has low population density and is a manageable aim for all of us at SEEK to be able to be guardians and educators easily across an extremely long coastline.

The fact is, IT DOESN’T MATTER WHERE YOU LIVE, plastic waste is persistent and pervasive, pernicious and persistent. Plastic reaches every part of the planet and we all have a responsibility to resolve the problem by reducing it, recycling it, reusing it.


Plastic is Energy

The production of plastic uses an incredible amount of fossil fuels, with most estimates placing it at an incredible 8% of global oil production, half of which is used in the actual manufacturing! Oil will inevitably become a precious resource and it seems absurd that we simply throw so much away, even the plastics industry view plastic as too valuable to throw away but recycling is still not in plastic users psyche.

The concerns of energy consumption within the industry have prompted growth in the research and development of bioplastics. They already account for 10-15% of the global market however are not the solution. They rely on potential food source crops for their production in the majority of cases and have become synonymous with degradable and biodegradable products – something that is not always the case, many products can take decades to degrade and can release methane gasses that are a significant contributor to global warming.

We need to reduce our usage significantly and look at reuse, redesign, and recycling of products as much as possible.


Plastic Oceans: Environmental Impact


  • Over 250 species have been known to have ingested or become entangles in plastic.

  • As much as 8% of some seals and sea lion species have been entangled and

  • over 130,000 cetaceans are caught in nets each year.


Plastic Oceans: Wildlife Ingestion

  • The United Nations Environment Program estimates that there are 46,000 pieces of plastic litter floating in every square mile of ocean.

  • Over 1,000 species of sea birds are known to ingest plastics

  • Research has shown over 95% of Fulmers, a sea bird have plastic in their stomachs that affect them in both chemical and mechanical ways.

  • Over 31 species of marine mammals are known to have ingested marine plastic

  • Here in Phuket regular deaths of dolphins, turtles, dugongs and whales have been partly attributed to plastic ingestion on autopsy.

Plastic Ocean: Transport of Invasive species

The huge increase in marine litter is having an unusual ecosystem impact. Plastic hard surfaces are ideal “carriers” for a number of organisms that can have a catastrophic impact on indigenous species. This is called “Biotic Mixing” that is bound to accelerate.


Plastic Oceans: Economic Impact

  • About half the world’s population lives close to the sea a figure that within 15 years is expected to rise to 75% as climate change impacts the world and interiors become both wetter and more flooded in some areas (Thailand/ Cambodia/ Vietnam) whilst becoming drier in others (Australia).

  • Around 60% of the world’s population gets the majority of its protein from the sea.

  • As well as an environmental impact, this plastic is also having a significant economic impact.

  • One estimate is that plastic pollution alone could be costing developing and industrialized nations trillions of dollars in lost tourism, depleted fish stocks and unsustainable practices.

  • In 2010 the cinque terre region of Italy banned plastic water bottles after it was estimated that 2mn were left behind every year by tourists, With 4mn tourists a year in Phuket, on a 3 day stay if is highly likely at 3 bottles per person per day Phuket already is wasting over 12mn bottles per year.

  • About 17mn barrels of oil are used annually to make 50bn water bottles, according to the pacific institute

There is 158.76 litres per barrel of oil

X 17mn barrels used annually  = 2,698,920,000 litres

Divided by 50,000,000,000 plastic bottles

=0.0539 litres of oil to create one plastic water bottle

      Oil costs about US$0.50 per litre = about 3c/1 baht to make one bottle

      Think about that each time you throw one baht away…


  • In 1989 29,000 bath toys were lost overboard in a shipping accident in the pacific ocean.

  • 15 years later and 17,000 miles of travel the same toys washed up on beaches in the UK…

  • Think before you throw


Plastic Oceans: Personal Health

So you know agree, plastic is bad for the oceans, for the air, for our ecosystems and for our wallets but here’s the kicker… it has bad health side effects.

Plastic is full cycle… we saw how it goes from street to ocean, from ocean to ocean getting broken down, from pieces to particles and then ingested by fish, birds and all sea creatures.

Fisherman collect a school of fish that have been feeding on plastic bits and bring to your local fish market… fresh fish… really?? Onto your loved ones dinner plate. These are called Persistant Organic Pollutants (POPS) which tend to concentrate in fish at far higher levels that are found in the oceans.

Daily Special: “Plastic snapper and shrimp a la plastic”



Health issues now become the issue:

CANCER (wang et al, WWF 1999, Ociepa –Zawal et al 2010, Purdue et al 2009, McGlynn et al 2008

DIABETES (Ruzzin et al 2010, Lee 2008, Carpenter 2008)


ALTERED IMMUNE SYSTEMS (WWF 1999, Hertz Picciotto 2008)


ENDOCRINE DISRUPTORS ( Cao et al 2008, Han et al 2010, Goncharrov et al 2009)


ENDOMETRIOSIS (Porpora et al 2009)

LOW BIRTH WEIGHTS (Murphy et al 2010)

LOWERED IQ (Jacobsen and Jacobsen 1996, Park et al 2009)

LOWERED READING AGES (Jacobson and Jaconson 1996)

AFFECTED SOCIAL SKILLS (Jaconson and Jacobson 1996)


MEMORY & ATTENTION PROBLEMS (WWF 1999, Jacobson and Jacobson)

Thanks to Plastic Oceans website for these excellent facts and plastic details, a site promoting the film “Plastic Oceans”


Reflect, think about your actions, refuse single use plastic bags, straws & polystyrene


Reduce, your waste


Reuse what you can, including composting


Recycle as much of what’s left


Responsibility, to our planet




Re-tweet, tell others


SEEK, for a better world.


NEWS reviewed in the show were from retweets by indigonick


Nick Anthony


All information is used as reference only and further details and reference materials are on Twitter

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dolphins and plastic bags