EARTH Thailand

Industrial & Hazardous Waste Management


Final ruling on Klity Creek compensation case

Bangkok Post 14 July 2016

The Supreme Court on Thursday reduced a compensation claim in the Klity Creek poisoning scandal from 29 million baht to 20 million baht, and ended a 13-year legal battle.

The case was first brought to Kanchanaburi Provincial Court in early 2003 by eight Karen villagers living at Klity Lang, a remote village in a national forest in Kanchanaburi's Thong Pha Phum district. The eight plaintiffs are four adults and four children who have developed chronic diseases associated with lead poisoning. They were represented by two solicitors from the Lawyers Council of Thailand. 


Press Release: Asian Governments Urged to Work Doubly Hard to Ratify Mercury Treaty

6 October 2016, Quezon City

Civil society groups exhorted Asian governments to ratify the Minamata Convention on Mercury as environmental and health officials from several countries converge in Pasay City for a three-day regional forum.


Forget Klong Dan, look at the Gulf of Thailand

Bangkok Post 21 August 2015 | Anchalee Kongrut

For some, the old adage, "Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me," can be applied to the Klong Dan water treatment project saga.

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment's plan to conduct a study into how to make best use of the project in Samut Prakan province, which was built in 1998 but never opened, has triggered worries it could end up as another "stupidity fee" for the state. It has also revived fears by locals that the plant, which they opposed years ago on environmental grounds, could once again pose a threat to the Gulf of Thailand.


Map Ta Phut blue stream raises fears

Bangkok Post 24 September 2014 | Jumphol Nikomruk

A small stream that turned vividly blue for a few hours in the industrial Map Ta Phut sub-district of Rayong province raised environmental concerns on Wednesday.

The strange colouring occurred in a small public waterway in Ban Nong Fab community of Muang Rayong district's Map Ta Phut sub-district at about 10am. The area houses the giant Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate which has been subject to incidents of pollution many times in recent years.


Tests prove ethanol plant leak killed giant stingrays

Bangkok Post 21 October 2016

The Pollution Control Department will sue Rajburi Ethanol Co for allowing molasses wastewater to leak into the Mae Klong River, killing many giant stingrays and other aquatic life.

Director-general Wijarn Simachaya said on Friday testing had shown that molasses wastewater leaked from the plant into the river in Ban Pong district of Ratchaburi, polluting it and killing aquatic life, including many native giant stingrays, in Ratchaburi and Samut Songkhram provinces from Oct 1 to 7.


PCD ready to sting ethanol firm with fine

Bangkok Post 22 October 2016 | Apinya Wipatayotin

Wastewater thought to have killed rays

The Pollution Control Department (PCD) will lodge a complaint with local police next week against Rajburi Ethanol Co for allowing wastewater containing molasses to leak into the Mae Klong River, killing many giant stingrays.


Giant stingrays under threat in Mae Klong River

The Nation 09 October 2016 | Pratch Rujivanarom 

GIANT freshwater stingrays are facing extinction in the Mae Klong River, a leading marine biologist warned yesterday as mass deaths attributed to water pollution killed a large segment of the population.

As many as 20 giant freshwater stingrays were found dead this week along the Mae Klong River in Samut Songkhram. The cause of death was still unknown yesterday, but researchers said poor water quality was a major cause of ecological damage.


Stingray deaths spur checks

Bangkok Post 12 October 2016 | Apinya Wipatayotin

Pollution dept orders toxic discharge tests

Wastewater discharged from factories is likely to be behind a sudden spike in deaths of stingrays in Samut Songkhram, but lab test results may not be able to provide a link to the culprits, says the Department of Pollution Control.


Firm scoops up oil for tests as cleanup starts

Bangkok Post 29 October 2015

Dept tracking down source of 10km spill on beaches

Authorities expect to identify in the next six weeks the source of tar balls and petroleum-coated garbage which has polluted long sections of beaches stretching from Hua Hin district in Prachuap Khiri Khan to neighbouring Cha-am district of Phetchaburi.


Scrap rejected by Thailand has hazardous amounts of lead from electronic waste, ministries say

Kyodo 28 October 2016

The government found a potentially hazardous amount of lead in some 200 tons of scrap material Thai authorities refused to accept from Japan, government sources disclosed.


Ethanol plant partly closed after toxic emissions

Bangkok Post 26 November 2016

An ethanol factory in Suphan Buri has been ordered to partly suspend operations until it corrects procedures after local residents complained of hydrogen sulfide emissions.


Investigation of chemicals released by the Vinythai and Thai Plastic & Chemicals (TPC) PVC manufacturing facilities, Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate, Rayong Province, Thailand

By Kevin Brigden, Iryna Labunska & David Santillo: Greenpeace Research Laboratories, November 2004

Vinythai and Thai Plastic & Chemicals (TPC) operate separate polyvinyl chloride (PVC) manufacturing facilities within the Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate, in Rayong Province, Thailand.  Canals flow through the estate and receive discharged wastewaters from many facilities prior to discharging into the Gulf of Thailand.  Both PVC manufacturing facilities discharge wastewaters to one of these canals herein referred to as the east canal.  Within the Vinythai and TPC facilities, PVC is produced as well as the raw materials used in its manufacture, namely chlorine, ethylene dichloride (EDC) and vinyl chloride monomer (VCM).  


Analysis of Water Quality around Large Anthropogenic Emissions Sources in Eastern Thailand

By Arpa Wangkiat, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Rangsit University, November 2006

The study evaluated variations in elemental compositions of water quality affected by large anthropogenic emission sources in Eastern Thailand: Map Ta Phut Industrial Estates which have housed over 90 industrial facilities including oil refineries, petrochemical and chemical facilities and hazardous waste landfills and treatment facilities. Eighty water samples were collected from water-well of 25 communities in Map Ta Phut during November 2005 and February 2006.


Coal-fired power plant and pulp and paper mill site: Tha Tum Mercury Hot Spot in Thailand

IPEN Mercury-Free Campaign Report

Ecological Alert and Recovery - Thailand (EARTH), Arnika Association and the IPEN Heavy Metals Working Group, January 2013

This report focuses on a coal-fired power plant and pulp and paper mill in Tha Tum, Thailand, which are part of the Prachinburi Province’s largest industrial complex located 120 km to the East-North-East from Bangkok, and 5.5 km south from the Prachinburi River. 


Increasing Transparency Industrial Pollution Management through Citizen Science: A Report on Thailand’s Waste Situation and Management

Arnika and Ecological Alert and Recovery – Thailand (EARTH), October 2016

Thailand and a National Path: Towards Sustainable Waste Management

The Thai government has announced that it will resolve municipal waste problems as part of its top national agenda by targeting the disposal of over 30 million tonnes of unmanaged waste, and setting up proper ways to dispose both hazardous and municipal solid wastes in 2021.


Noxious Emissions: Doctors beg for funds to move hospital

The Nation 08 February 2007 | Pennapa Hongthong

Map Ta Phut medical staff fear for their lives after reports of high cancer rates

The alarming levels of cancer emerging in Map Ta Phut communities have sparked fear among Map Ta Phut Hospital medical staff who are waiting for the facility to be relocated away from the heavy-industry complex.


Industrial waste fire at Genco building in Rayong

Bangkok Post 22 September 2016 | Jumphol Nikomruk

RAYONG -- A fire broke out in a building used to store industrial waste in Muang district early on Thursday, causing extensive damage but no casualties.

The fire started about 4.40am at the General Environmental Conservation Plc (Genco) building on Muang Mai Map Ta Phut Road in tambon Huay Pong.


Malaysia imposes three-month ban on bauxite exports to fight pollution 6 January 2016 | Cecilia Jamasmie

(Photo by GERAM |

Malaysia has decided to halt the mining of bauxite in Pahang, the largest producing state, for three months beginning Jan. 15, in an attempt to cut sea and air pollution caused by the sector in the past two years.


EPA faces first lawsuit over Colorado mine spill 15 January 2016 | Cecilia Jamasmie

The state of New Mexico plans to sue the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) over last year’s toxic Colorado mining spill that sent 3 million gallons of waste into the Animas and San Juan rivers.


Residents get payout over fires at landfill dump

Bangkok Post 17 July 2016

Writer: Suthiwit Chayutworakan & Penchan Charoensuthipan

Residents affected by potentially hazardous smoke from fires at the Praeksa landfill dump in Samut Prakan two years ago have each received 3,000 baht in compensation from the dump owner following a settlement.



Plaintiffs in Klity Creek case triumph after 13-year effort


Supreme court's 'historic' verdict includes bt20.2M compensation, mandatory clean-up pf contamination and blame for executives.

A 13-YEAR-LONG court battle with a lead-mining company has finally come to an end for people from the Lower Klity village in Kanchaburi province, as the Supreme Court ruled yesterday that residents will be compensated and executives forced to fund the clean up of Klity Creek.


MWA opposes waste-fired power plant

Bangkok Post 08 April 2016 | Writer: Apinya Wipatayotin

Agency worried about risk to water supply

The Metropolitan Waterworks Authority (MWA), a state enterprise under the Interior Ministry, opposes the planned construction of a waste-fired power plant in tambon Chiang Rak Yai of Pathum Thani's Sam Khok district, it said Tuesday.

Chaiwat Vorapeboonpong, assistant to the MWA governor, said the MWA joined residents in tambon Chiang Rak Yai in moving against the project which would pose a threat to the Sam-Lae Raw water pump station, the biggest raw water source in the area, which serves milli

A complete waste

Bangkok Post 01 May 2016 | Spectrum - Nanchnok Wongsamuth

Ten years after a Suvarnabhumi airport rubbish management contract was signed, disputes continue and work is still incomplete

When the Samart Corporation partnered in a lucrative deal to dispose of waste at Suvarnabhumi Airport in 2006, questions were raised as to why a telecommunications company was awarded the contract. The 600 million baht agreement with the Airports of Thailand (AoT) called for the construction of two incinerators to handle all waste generated at the country's biggest airport.


Hazardous waste going back to Japan

The Nation 29 July 2016  By CHAMNAN CHAIEUA

THE Department of Industrial Works decided to send more than 190 tonnes of electronic waste back to Japan yesterday, after seven containers of hazardous waste was seized two years ago.

Sukda Punkla, deputy permanent secretary of the Industry Ministry, led a ceremony in which smuggled electronic waste would be shipped back to Japan after it was listed as dangerous under the Hazardous Materials Act, which requires importers to seek permission from authorities before bringing it into the country.


Cases of blood contamination


NEARLY HALF of the people living near a gold mine in Phichit province have been found to have abnormally high levels of manganese in their blood as indicated by a study run by Rangsit University.

420 of the people tested had higher than normal levels of manganese. "About 19.52 per cent of those who provided blood samples also have abnormally high levels of arsenic in their blood. The level of cyanide is higher tha normal in 5.88 per cent,"


PM: Pollution ruling is a threat


Delays in investment by state-owned energy giant PTT Plc could jeopardise the national economy, warns Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva.

PTT's investment plans were thrown into disarray this week when the Rayong Administrative Court ruled the Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate in Rayong should be designated a pollution-control zone.


Fire at PTT Phenol factory in Rayong

Bangkok Post 22 August 2016 | Jumphol Nikomruk

RAYONG -- A wastewater tank exploded and started a fire inside the factory of PTT Phenol Co in the Hemaraj Eastern Industrial Estate, Muang district, early on Monday. Pol Lt Maitree Pakul, the duty officer at Map Ta Phut police station, said the incident occurred about 2.17am. A 537 cubic metre tank containing wastewater contaminated with hydrocarbon exploded and caught fire. The fire spread quickly, sending a foul smell throughout the factory, which produces phenol and acetone.


55 Years After Agent Orange Was Used In Vietnam, One Of Its Creators Is Thriving Here

Huffington Post 30 August 2016 | By Dien Luong, Freelance Investigative Journalist

Monsanto is expanding in a country it once helped destroy.

HO CHI MINH CITY, Vietnam ― Fifty-five years ago this month, the U.S. Army began spraying millions of gallons of the toxic defoliant known as Agent Orange over large swaths of southern Vietnam. Today, however, instead of resentment and isolation from the U.S., the country is awash with Americanophilia.


Lead Levels Are Forcing More Than 1,000 Indiana Residents To Relocate

NPR 31 August 2016 | Merrit Kennedy

More than 1,000 residents of a public housing complex in East Chicago, Ind., are now forced to relocate because of dangerously high lead levels in the area's soil.

The West Calumet Housing Complex, which houses primarily low-income families, lies on the site of a former lead smelting company, as member station WBEZ reported.


Seminar seeks to shine spotlight on mercury-linked Minamata disease

Kyodo  07 September 2016 | Keiji Hirano

Victims, researchers and academics will on Saturday gather in Bangkok for a seminar marking the 60th anniversary since the discovery of mercury poisoning malady Minamata disease.

To be held at Chulalongkorn University, speakers will include Shinobu Sakamoto, a Kumamoto Prefecture native who contracted Minamata disease, which paralyzes the central nervous system and causes birth defects, in the womb.


Thailand will be ready to rectify the Minamata Convention on Mercury by 2017, said PCD

EARTH 12 September 2016

The organizers of the “MINAMATA@60: Learning from Industrial Disaster towards Sustainable Society and Environment”, including academics from Thailand and Japan, and Ms. Shinobu Sakamoto, a Minamata Congenital disease patient, met with the Director General of Pollution Control Department (PCD), Dr. Wijarn Simachaya, and the group also met with the representative of the Office of the Permanent Secretary, the Prime Minister’s Office, the Deputy Director of Disease Control Department, the Bureau of Occupational and Environmental Diseases of the Ministry of Health, and the Chair of the Health Committee of the National Legislative Assembly, to urge the related state agencies to ratify the Minamata Convention on Mercury.


PH a legal dumpsite for imported e-waste

The Manila Times 15 September 2016 | BEN KRITZ

INDUSTRIALIZED nations such as South Korea are taking advantage of a 2013 administrative order from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) that allows the importation of large amounts of potentially toxic electronic waste, or e-waste, such as discarded televisions, mobile phones, and computer components, an investigation by The Manila Times found.


Vietnam's eco-industry needs incentives

Viet Nam News  21 April 2016  

HANOI - The Vietnam Environmental Industry Association called for the creation of incentives to promote the development of the industry at a conference in Ha Noi last week.

The conference sought to review the implementation of a project on developing the environmental industry in Vietnam for the 2010-15 period and set goals through to 2025.


A dangerous export: America's car-battery waste is making Mexican communities sick

The Washington Post  26 February 2016 | Joshua Partlow,  Joby Warrick

DOCTOR GONZALEZ, Mexico — After the initial headaches and nausea, Juan Gonzalez Mendoza’s physical deterioration came swiftly: deep pain in his bones, elbows and knees that refused to bend, then numbness throughout his left side, steady loss of control over his arms and legs, and finally an inability to walk or even stand.


Risk Communication and Chemical Accident Management: Case Study of BST Elastomers Factory Accident in Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate, Rayong, Thailand

By Nicha Rakpanichmanee, Dawan Chantarahasdee and Kanis Pongnavin - Researchers at Ecological Alert and Recovery – Thailand (EARTH), February 2013

Thailand in a time of rapid industrialization has witnessed increased risk from chemical accidents and industrial pollution. The objective of this study is to review the existing approach of risk communication and chemical accident management in Thailand. We analyze risk communication in practice according to the principle that risk communication is not a product of scientific calculation, but a process of negotiation and deliberative agreement in society.