Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT)
Statement of Thai CSOs demanding for greater responsibility of Thai investors in their investments abroad
The authorities have arrested 16 southern environmental activists after brief clash with the protesters. At 4:30 pm on 27 November 2017, military and police officers arrested 16 key leaders of the network from Songkhla and Pattani provinces protesting against the planned coal-fired power plant and deep sea port in Songkhla. Those detained include Direk Hemnakhon, Somboon Kamhaeng, and Ekachai Isarata.
People in Songkhla and Pattani have rallied against plans for a coal-fired power plant and deep sea port ahead of a cabinet meeting. On 26 November 2017, a network from Songkhla and Pattani provinces protesting against a planned coal-fired power plant held a rally in Songkhla ahead of the coming cabinet meeting in the province on 28 November. The group plans to submit a petition to Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha, the junta leader and Prime Minister, asking the government to cancel plans for a 2,200-megawatt power plant and deep sea port in Thepha District, Songkhla.
The authorities are still pushing an energy policy that ignores local interests and the environment, even after February protests temporarily halted a coal-fired power station in Krabi.
The UK, once almost entirely reliant on coal-fired energy, had its first coal-free day since 1880 this month (Friday 21st April), meaning it is on schedule to be completely coal free by 2025. More coal-free days will depend on the availability of solar, especially in June and July. Approximately half the UK’s energy comes from gas, 30% from renewables and inter-country agreements, and the rest from nuclear.
Southern civil society groups have denounced a public forum held by the junta to gather feedback on its pro-coal policies, saying the event was merely self-promotion. On 27 March 2017, Lt Gen Piyawat Nakwanich, a representative of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), presided over a public forum on energy policy in southern Thailand. The forum was convened in Mueang District, Krabi Province. The event was organised by a controversial committee, more than half of whose members are military officers.
To promote its controversial pro-coal policy, the junta has set up a committee to gather public feedback and promote understanding. But military officers occupy more than half of the committee seats. On 22 March 2017, the Royal Gazette website published the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO)’s Order No. 5/2017 to establish a committee on energy policy in Southern Thailand.
The Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) has filed defamation lawsuits against people accusing it of causing environmental destruction. On 13 March 2017, Pranee Tangseree, Assistant Governor of EGAT’s Legal Affairs Bureau, revealed that EGAT had filed 15 complaints to the police against people posting content on social media accusing its power plants of pollution leading to sickness and death.
Thailand’s cabinet has halted plans to build a controversial coal-fired power plant in the southern Krabi province.
An association against global warming has filed a lawsuit against five Thai government entities over plans to build more coal-fired power plants.