Public Participation In Planning The Coal-fired Power Plant Projects In Thailand
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201 - 209
Many coal-fired power plants in Thailand are often faced with opposition and conflict resulting from their severe environmental impacts, in particular air pollution, affecting the public living near the projects. The public has lost confidence in the environmental monitoring and mitigation plans of the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) system since many ongoing projects cause severe problems to their environmental and social impacts. To handle the issue, public participation becomes a key element of the development of the power plant project since the participation process can create mutual understanding among stakeholders including engaging the public in the decisionmaking process. This research aims to evaluate the present status of public participation in development of power plant projects. The case study, the Hin Krut Coal-fired Power Plant Project was studied and analyzed. The Thai EIA legislation and EIA system were identified in the analysis with an emphasis on the opportunities of public participation, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of the public participation process. The study found that the development of power plant project could be more successful where the appropriate public participation is undertaken. It also can help avert confrontation and conflicts among stakeholders. Some lessons learnt from the study are revealed for improving and promoting the public participation process in Thailand. Keywords: public participation, Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), coal-fired power plant, Thailand.
public participation, Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), coal-fired power plant, Thailand.