EARTH Thailand

PRTR & Community Right-to-Know

What is a PRTR?

A Pollutant Release and Transfer Register (PRTR) is a national or regional environmental database or inventory of potentially hazardous chemical substances and/or pollutants released to air, water and soil and transferred off-site for treatment or disposal.

  • The industrial or business facilities quantify and report the amounts of substances released to each environmental medium (air, water, soil) or transferred off-site for waste management or wastewater treatment.
  • Some PRTRs also include estimates of releases from diffuse sources, such as agriculture and transport and from the end use of products. These data are normally compiled by environmental authorities.




Villagers win pollution case

Bangkok Post 04 March 2009 | APINYA WIPATAYOTIN  

The Administrative Court has ruled in favour of villagers in Rayong province, ordering the National Environment Board to declare the area near Map Ta Phut industrial estate a pollution control zone.

Twenty-seven villagers from 11 communities around the industrial estate in Muang district filed the case in October 2007, accusing the NEB of negligence for failing to designate the area as a pollution control zone.


Environment issue at hand

The Nation 06 January 2010 

About 20 villagers from Map Ta Phut were today in Bangkok, asking for participation in the panel.


Map Ta Phut has 'soured Japanese investors'

The Nation 07 January 2010 | Nalin Viboonchart

Thailand is no longer the most attractive Asian destination for Japanese investors, thanks to the Map Ta Phut fiasco, Munenori Yamada, president of the Japan External Trade Organisation's Bangkok office, said yesterday.


Six workers hospitalised after latest Map Ta Phut gas leak

The Nation 13 December 2009

Six construction workers were hospitalised yesterday after a poisonous gas leaked out near a power plant at the Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate in Rayong.

Reports by construction workers of a foul odour, sore throats and dizziness prompted the evacuation of about 200 workers from the Siam Steel Plate factory and other nearby sites at 8.30am.


Locals pay the price as junta pushes for Songkhla SEZ

Prachatai 31 October 2016 | Kongpob Areerat

In a bid to lure investors, Thailand’s junta plans to evict some 300 citizens from their homes to construct a Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in the southern province of Songkhla. While the military’s development plans could boost a stalled economy, the country’s poor are paying the price.


A Burning Question: Access to Environmental Information in Thailand

Report of the Thai Right to Know Project by Campaign for Alternative Industry Network (CAIN), Greenpeace Southeast Asia, EnLAW, September 2004

Author: Aaron P. Grieser

Citizens in Thailand usually learn about toxic emissions releases after the fact. All too often the paralyzing realization comes as the telltale signs of wildlife and vegetation loss, or ingestion-related illness. In most cases the public simply does not know of their exposure to risk. NGOs, academics and affected citizens in nearly every sector of Thai civil society acknowledge how exclusion from the knowledge-circle cripples their ability to safeguard their environment and the vitality of their communities.


Thailand’s Air: Poison Cocktail

Exposing Unsustainable Industries and the Case for Community Right To Know and Prevention [Thailand Bucket Brigade]

By Campaign for Alternative Industry Network (CAIN), Greenpeace Southeast Asia (GPSEA), Global Community Monitor (GCM), October 2005

This report gives fresh evidence that the proposed ‘Community Right To Know Law’ and the ‘National Pollutant Release and Transfer Registers (PRTR) System’ are essentially needed along with better environmental monitoring and direct involvement of affected communities in environmental decision-making with the aim to achieve environmental justice and sustainable society.


Ignorance is Toxic… Double Standard at Map Ta Phut

Published by Campaign for Alternative Industry Network (CAIN), January 2007

Large parts of Thai society are unaware of dangers that come along with the rapid industrial development of the country. While a company’s facility will have numerous impacts on its surrounding, many of those are hidden and require public disclosure in order for people to know what their concerns should be. Exclusion from the knowledge-circle cripples people’s ability to safeguard their environment and the vitality of their communities. This has been recognized by the principle of “Right to Know” (RTK).


Pollutant Release and Transfer Register – Important Tool for NGOs Working on Chemicals

Powerpoint Presentation from the IPEN General Assembly, 22 October 2010

By RNDr. Jindřich Petrlík, Arnika Association



Map Ta Phut locals demand say in industrial safeguards

Bangkok Post 20 May 2012 | Tunya Sukpanich

The utter lack of warning and evacuation measures during the recent twin disasters at the industrial estate has galvanised nearby communities to insist on the right to have a greater say in how they are protected


Chemical Accidents and Civil Society Role in Supporting the Toxics Free Future in Thailand

By Penchom Saetang, Director, Ecological Alert and Recovery – Thailand (EARTH)

22 November 2015

Chemical accidents in Thailand: a case of Klong Toey chemical explosion, National Strategic Plan on Chemical Management, and the key challenges under the National Strategic Plan on Chemical Management


Industrial Pollution Impact and the PRTR Development in Thailand

By Penchom Saetang, Walaiporn Mooksuwan, Ecological Alert and Recovery – Thailand (EARTH)

29 May 2011

Explosion of the Bangkok Port’s Chemical Warehouse in March 1991: a starting point of the public demand for the right to know about the chemical information. Around 650 houses burnt down with over 5,000 slum residents, fire fighters and concerned people exposed to the toxic chemical fumes, 4 sudden death and over 100 victims proved to have chronic illness and serious health impact caused by the unknown chemical substances. The incident has important impact in Thailand’ environmental-related law reform. read more...

Ministry rejects local pollution plan

Bangkok Post 07 January 2010 | Apinya Wipatayotin

The Natural Resources and Environment Ministry has rejected a local plan to reduce pollution at Map Ta Phut, claiming a "lack of sound measures to tackle industrial pollution".


Panel to propose pollution control tactics for Map Ta Phut

The Nation 29 April 2010   

A subpanel will propose measures on tackling pollution in Rayong's Map Ta Phut area before the end of next month.

The subpanel would work under a fourpart committee that is chaired by former prime minister Anand Panyarachun and was established after the Central Administrative Court suspended dozens of industrial projects in the heavily polluted Map Ta Phut area.


Chemical Plant Shut, Faces Probe Over Leak

The Nation 09 June 2010   

Due to the leak, 299 people were hospitalised. Dozens of them were still in hospitals as of press time yesterday.

The factory is located inside the Hemaraj Eastern Industrial Estate in Rayong.

In the wake of the incident, Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand governor Monta Pranootnorapal ordered the suspension of the factory's operations and an investigation into the incident.


Court suspends 76 projects in Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate

Thai News Agency 29 September 2009

BANGKOK (TNA) – Thailand’s Central Administrative Court on Tuesday ordered 76 industrial projects in Map Ta Phut industrial estate in the eastern province of Rayong to temporarily halt operating amid continual concern about critical environmental and health impacts.


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.


Toxic Chemicals from E-Waste Found in Brain Toys Sold in Philippine Market

Beyond Deadlines 30 August 2016 | Nelson Flores, Ll.B.

THE EcoWaste Coalition, an environment and public health watchdog, on Tuesday warned that some toys that are designed to exercise the mind may contain toxic chemicals from recycled electronic waste, which can damage the central nervous system and reduce children’s intellectual capacity.

The coalition made known its apprehension following the disclosure of the results of a global survey on toxic chemicals in brain toys at a scientific conference on persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in Firenze, Italy.


Lawsuit Against EPA Demands Better Protection from Lead Paint

Eight groups site the agency for its lack of attention to a crisis affecting an estimated 37.1 million homes.

Color Lines 24 August 2016 | Yessenia Funes

Flint, Michigan brought national attention to the U.S. lead crisis, yet a lawsuit filed today (August 24) in the U.S. Court of Appeals reminds that water is not the only place where lead can be found in homes.


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.


Most Map Ta Phut projects off hook

Bangkok Post 03 September 2010

Rayong villagers react emotionally, slam govt

The Administrative Court has ordered the operating permits of only two industrial projects in the Map Ta Phut area to be terminated, allowing 74 other earlier-suspended projects to go ahead.

The court on Thursday handed down its ruling in the case filed by Map Ta Phut villagers and the Stop Global Warming Association against eight state agencies in June last year.


Govt moves to end Map Ta Phut saga

Bangkok Post 01 September 2010

Cabinet approves list of harmful industries

The government has taken another step towards ending the Map Ta Phut saga by approving a list of 11 industrial activities deemed harmful to the environment.


Panel finalises harmful industrial activities List

Bangkok Post 07 June 2010  

Map Ta Phut residents say safeguards still missing

RAYONG : The four-party panel working on solving Map Ta Phut's pollution problems has finalised a draft list of activities it considers harmful to the environment and public health.


Pregnant women most at risk in areas near Map Ta Phut estate

The Nation 02 June 2010 |  JANJIRA PONGRAI

Toxins from Rayong's Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate could cause about 16 per cent of pregnant women living within less than four kilometres of the estate to give premature birth, a report revealed yesterday.


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.