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Last week dozens of new bins popped up around Maenam. The new additions made from chicken wire and stainless steel with different sections for different sorts of garbage appeared unannounced overnight.
The ones placed in Soi 5 not only brought a new opportunity to dispose of rubbish but a new road hazard as well, as many of them were placed protruding into the road on blind bends that would be very hard to see at night.
Several days after they arrived many of the new bins have disappeared, some have been turned upside down, some have already been recycled and some have been tucked away behind resident’s homes, none so far appear to have been used in the way they were intended. It appears the locals are not impressed. Neither to would it seem are Soi 1 residents who appear of have chucked most of them into fields and ditches!
One Soi 5 resident told the Samui Times “I am all for doing something about the garbage in Samui, it has become clear there is a huge problem and I believe the incinerator in the south has been broken for years and tons of rubbish are just piling up. We used to dump our rubbish opposite the 7-11 by Soi 2 in Maenam, there were even big metal containers there for a while, but recently they have gone and a row of potted plants have been put there to stop us dumping. When I saw the new stainless steel bins I was happy that something was being done, but most of them in Soi 5 were a real hazard to drivers as they were poking right out into the road. I was going to buy some reflectors to put on the worst offenders but now they seem to have been either removed or turned upside down off the roads”.
Several weeks ago a Soi 2 resident wrote to the Samui Times complaining that all of the bins in that soi had been removed and questioned where residents of Soi 2 were expected to dump their rubbish.
The Samui Times have made several reports of the diabolical state of the land fill behind the prison. It now seems that the land fill site, that for the last 8 years has been stock piling rubbish thanks to a broken incinerator that nobody has taken responsibility for, is now being turned into a gigantic plastic lined pit where one can only assume the millions of tons of rubbish will be buried. Directly behind the Samui Provincial Prison, one can only hope that the pools of toxic disease ridden water do not kill those involved in moving it or cause a disease pandemic on the island.
The reasons the once effective incinerator plant has been left in a state of disrepair have never been clarified. It is thought that a grant was produced some years ago to fix the problem and last year the Governor of Surat Thani issued an order that it was to be fixed, however the order appears to have fallen on deaf ears.
Several local residents called for a meeting after one article was published in the Samui Times vowing to take matters into their own hands, however after some were warned off and somewhere told “if you don’t like it here go home” they appear to have given up.
The health risk posed by the landfill site are real and require urgent attention, one resident who did not wish to be named told us “it is a total disgrace, Samui is a paradise that should be cherished and loved, not raped and abused. It is the responsibility of everybody who lives and works here to take an interest in environmental issues, what about the big hotels? Why do they not care where the rubbish goes? Their incomes depend upon it, I am saddened that people seem to want to make money here but have little or no consideration for the island, its future or residents health.”