ASEAN environment officials discuss marine debris issue

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Bangkok – The permanent secretaries for environment from the 10 ASEAN member states discussed important environmental issues at a meeting in Bangkok this week.

The 30th ASEAN Senior Officials on the Environment Meeting was divided into seven groups, including natural conservation and biodiversity, marine and coastal environment, marine resource management, environmentally sustainable cities, climate change, waste and hazardous substance management, and sustainable consumption and production.

Since 2017, Thailand has taken action to reduce marine debris and the Bangkok Declaration on Combating Marine Debris was recently ratified at the 34th ASEAN Summit. Many member states have shown interest in solving this problem, as so much plastic waste that ends up in the sea comes from five Asian countries, four of which are ASEAN members.

The meeting also discussed measures to combat the illegal wildlife trade, which has become a major problem in the region. The results of this conference will be presented to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, which will take place in December this year, and the 35th ASEAN Summit, which will be held in Thailand this November.