Ocean Plastics: How marine litter shapes the lives of residents of Cu Lao Cham Marine Protected Area, Vietnam

Nguyen, Alisa
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University of Guelph

Marine litter drifting in the world’s oceans cause problems for the health of marine life and persist in the environment. Scholarly attention has been focused on waste management, environmental impact, international trade and individual consumption, overlooking the impact plastic is having on the lives of coastal residents. The purpose of this thesis is to identify how waste washing up on the beaches has an impact on daily lives. This research studies Vietnam, cited as one of the top five contributors to plastic in the world’s oceans, and specifically Cu Lao Cham Marine Protected Area; a major tourism destination for up to 3000 daily visitors, and home of a 10-year ban on plastic bags. Results explore the multiple ways marine litter is intertwined with residents’ lives, how plastic can be used as a resource by coastal residents; and the impact government interventions have on the adoption of tourism related livelihoods.

Discard Studies, Marine Debris, Waste Management, Informal Waste Pickers, Fishers, Marine Protected Areas, Vietnam, Plastic Bags, Ocean Plastic