Application Of Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) To Alleviate Air Pollution And The Other Impacts From Power Plant Development
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Development of power plants in Thailand has become very difficult for several years especially a coal-fired power plant as it draws a very strong resistance from local communities and NGOs. The most concern of these people is air pollution with perceived serious impact on the health of local people and the environment. On the other hand, demand for electricity in the country has been soaring in line with the economic development. Hence, this study attempted to find a new approach to respond to both people’s concern and the demand of the country. Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) is a tool to assist decision-makers in considering benefits and impacts of proposed development policies, strategies or plans in a more comprehensive manner, in other words, to ensure the sustainable consequences of such development. A Regional Environmental Assessment (REA) which is a type of SEA focusing on analyzing the potential of a certain area against different kinds of development was selected for this study. The study started by interviewing relevant administrators and policy makers. In addition, public meetings with local people living around a power plant and also a proposed coal-fired power plant development site were organized. The 4-dimension REA then was developed in which initial indicators were proposed. This REA framework was presented for discussions in a stakeholder focus group meeting and in the second public meetings. Subsequently, a set of issues, indicators and criterion were established for analyzing the potential of any area against the development of power plant. Keywords: air pollution, power plant development, Strategic Environmental Assessment.
air pollution, power plant development, Strategic EnvironmentalAssessment