Dropping of cigarette butts on Thailand will cost you $2,940
Beginning next month, the dropping of cigarette butts on all major beaches nationwide will be legally prohibited and those found to do so will be subject to a maximum of one year in prison or a maximum of 100,000 baht ($2,940) in fine or both, according to the Department of Marine and Coastal Resources Director General Jatuporn Burutphat.
Thailand's major beaches where the stringent legal measure will be imposed under the Marine and Coastal Resources Management Act of 2015, primarily designed to combat pollution in the sea and environment, include those in Pattaya, Hua Hin, Phuket and Koh Samui island, among others.
Besides, those who may drop cigarette butts while traveling on any boats in the sea will be faced with the same legal penalties, the department chief said.
He cited a survey recently conducted by the department's research center as finding out that about 139,000 cigarette butts had been dropped randomly in the sand along a 2.5-kilometer-long Patong beach in Phuket.
Thailand has had some 500,000 tons of cigarette butts and cigarette packs discarded freely in a year only to become rotten waste and detrimental to the environment, he said. ■