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Does Samui’s waste water all end up in the sea?

Chanel 3’s roaming reporter attended a seminar held to find a solution to the sewage problem in Koh Samui. The seminar took place at the Samui Paradise resort with Mr Chatpong Chattaraputi, Surat Thani Provincial Governor, Mr Ramnet Jaiglang, Koh Samui’s Lord Mayor and Mr Thanongsak Somwang, Promotion Association (to represent the people) in attendance.

The main question posed was “does 100% of waste water flow into the sea or not?”

waste waterA report showed that for the four years the septic systems in Koh Samui have been malfunctioning and rather than being contained in a system of sewerage wells, it has been seeping into bodies of water and the Tasman Lake along with waste water from local households. During the severe flooding three years ago, all of the untreated waste was washed into the sea causing considerable damage to the aquatic environment. The main concern is that if the sewerage issue is not resolved it will start to affect tourism costing the country billions in tourist revenue every year.

It is not possible to repair the current system and ideas such as damming the area around the wells and putting in some kind of filtration system as well as biological solutions to treating the waste have been discussed. Tour operators are especially concerned about the waste management situation as damage to aquatic life could ruin what is one of the islands biggest tourist attractions.

Mr Ramnet Jaiglang, Koh Samui Lord Mayor said that the Municipality has plans to install a separate water pipe and two more waste water wells in addition to the existing three, during the next three months,  in Bophut and Hua Thanon to accommodate the islands increasing demands.

Story by Ann Kwanta

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