Supermarkets in Thailand and Vietnam Swap Plastic Packaging for Banana Leaves

Thailand and Vietnam are two of the five countries that account for 60 percent of the plastic in the world’s oceans, according to a 2015 study. Now, Vice reported Friday that supermarkets in both countries are going back to nature to find an alternative to plastic bags: banana leaves. A …

Hong Kong Is at the Heart of Global Wildlife Trafficking

Hong Kong is a small autonomous territory with fewer than 7.5 million residents. Yet this bustling urban center in southeastern China is at the very center of the global wildlife trafficking trade, according to local experts. “Hong Kong’s illegal wildlife trade is contributing to a global extinction crisis,” The University …

M&S Launches New ‘Eco Bag’ to Reduce Plastic Waste

Marks & Spencer (M&S) has launched a new eco-shopping bag that helps prevent waste and reduce poverty among people living in Haiti and the Philippines. Launching in stores on 6th November, the re-usable bag is made from 75% Social Plastic©, which is plastic waste that has been collected and recycled …

New Renewables Cheaper Than Old Coal in Southeast Asia

A new analysis from independent financial think tank Carbon Tracker has concluded that it would be cheaper to build new solar PV and onshore wind capacity in Indonesia, Vietnam, and the Philippines by the end of the next decade rather than continue operating existing coal-fired power plants. Carbon Tracker published …

Thailand to Ban Imports of Plastics and E-Waste

Thailand has joined Vietnam and Malaysia in cracking down on the world’s trash. Thailand will stop accepting more than 400 types of electronic waste (e-waste), including circuit boards, old TVs and radios, within six months, an environment ministry official told Reuters. The decision was made Wednesday at a meeting chaired …

Wild-Caught Elephants Can Die Up to 7 Years Earlier

For the study, published Tuesday in Nature Communications, researchers studied records of 5,000 timber elephants in Myanmar to understand the effects of capture. They determined that capturing and taming wild-caught elephants resulted in a median lifespan that is 3–7 years shorter than their captive-born counterparts. “Capturing elephants to sustain captive …

Typhoons, Floods, Heat Waves Batter Asia

From flash floods in Vietnam to a blistering heat wave in Japan, countries across Asia are suffering from extreme weather, CNN reported Sunday. The events come nearly two months into the continent’s annual rainy season that extends from June to November, according to The Straits Times. A 2016 study showed …