International cooperation is the answer to global pollution, scientists confirmed at the Prague conference

International cooperation is the answer to global pollution, scientists confirmed at the Prague co...

15 September 2022, PRAGUE/JAKARTA/BANGKOK – The international BioDetectors conference took place in Prague on 13-14 September and was attended by experts worldwide. They can use...

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Thai court rules in record speed that authorities neglected their duty to protect the environment

Thai court rules in record speed that authorities neglected their duty to protect the environment

An administrative court in the Thai town of Nakhon Sawan said four authorities had neglected their duties regarding a dangerous landfill in Petchaboon province, despite having...

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Australia is still dumping waste in Asia

Australia is still dumping waste in Asia

9 August 2022, BANGKOK/CANBERRA - Thailand’s Minister for the Environment has ordered the repatriation of 130 tonnes of Australian waste, imported into the country as paper and...

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Thailand

5Thailand has been suffering from industrial pollution for a long time, but it is not just a technical problem. In fact, corruption, poor law enforcement, and a lack of functional self-government play a more significant role. Residents and workers in polluted areas are often denied the right to participate in decision-making processes, being said that they are not technical experts in those fields. In other cases, citizens' complaints are rejected due to a lack of scientific evidence. The result is growing conflicts in many Thai communities, as well as long-term negative impacts on local health and the overall state of the surrounding environment.

We have been cooperating with the Thai non-profit organization EARTH for several years within the Toxics and Waste program. Our past activities have shown that simple research on industrial pollution of the environment can provide strong arguments and improve the overall bargaining power of Thai communities. They then find it easier to cooperate with government agencies and the polluters.

A scientific initiative for reducing industrial pollution

We help communities gather scientific evidence and raise awareness of the increasing damage to the environment and health from industrial development in Thailand. We focus on rural communities whose traditional livelihoods suffer from unregulated growth of industrial activity and who are often afraid to oppose polluters, mainly due to corruption or threats. We try to assist in enforcing the right to environmental information using tools known in the Czech Republic and the European Union, primarily through the initiative of public participation in decision-making.

In November 2017 in Bangkok, Arnika unveiled the conclusions of a two-year POPs study: POPs at Four Thai Hot-spots: Map Ta Phut, Samut Sakhon, Tha Tum, and Khon KaenChicken Eggs as an Indicator of POPs Pollution in Thailand

Monitoring of hot spots

We advocate for the creation of a so-called “Pollution Monitoring Volunteer Network” composed of residents and workers living in polluted localities. We supply affected residents and workers with technical equipment and information that allows them to monitor chemical pollution. We educate communities about the properties of chemical pollutants, as well as the so-called Best Available Technology and Best Environmental Practices.

Our activities in Thailand have been enabled thanks to the “Increasing Transparency in Industrial Pollution Management through Citizen Science” and “Public participation through citizen science and EIA system enhancement” projects funded by the European Union (EU) and co-funded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic within the Transition Promotion Program.

tha project