Enforcement and Compliance News

  • Explosion at Coal-Fired Plant in Central China Kills at Least 21

    Aug 11 2016

    BEIJING — At least 21 people were killed and five injured by an explosion at a coal-fired power plant in central China on Thursday, according to official reports.

    The deaths and injuries occurred when a high-pressure steam pipe exploded at a plant in the city of Dangyang in Hubei Province, according to a news website run by the provincial government.

    The plant is owned by the Madian Gangue Power Generation Company, the website said. The company generates thermal power and sells slag, ash and petroleum products.

    A man who answered the telephone at the Dangyang government’s propaganda office, who identified himself as Mr. Chen, said that an investigation was underway...

  • An Air Purifier for Beijing?

    Aug 1 2016

    While it is recognized that this tower cannot solve the choking smog of Beijing, it is still quite remarkable (pictured below).

    Just 23-foot tall, the Smog Free Tower is the world's first outdoor air cleaner. It operates with a powerful vacuum to suck up pollution into a powerful ionization process and to filter out the dangerous particles and releases purified air. Based upon the Rotterdam tests, the Tower can eliminate 70-80 percent of the impurities in the air from an area the size of a football stadium. The carbon particles extracted from the air will be compressed and sealed in acrylic in the form of rings, cuff links and cubes and then sold with the proceeds intended to be...

  • 196 tonnes of hazardous waste being sent back to Japan

    Jul 28 2016

    CHON BURI - More than 190 tonnes of hazardous electronic and electrical waste will be sent back to Japan on Friday after being illegally imported through Laem Chabang port of this eastern province last year.

    Industry deputy permanent secretary Sakda Pankla inspected the 196.11 tonnes of toxic waste on Thursday. He was accompanied by senior officials from the Department of Industrial Works, the Department of Pollution Control, the Customs Department, and Laem Chabang port and cargo terminal operators.

    This huge amount of hazardous garbage was seized following an inspection of containers at Laem Chabang port by customs and industrial works officials on Aug 28 last year, Mr...

  • Klity offers lessons for us all

    Jul 18 2016

    The scene is almost deja vu: A group of Karen villagers dressed in traditional costume and their representative lawyers clad in solemn suits hold their hands high in victory. The location is the Supreme Court. Journalists rush to interview them and file reports that read: "Klity villagers win court battle". Again.

    These poor Karen villagers, who experienced devastating health problems or lost loved ones from lead poisoning after years of consuming water from a creek contaminated by untreated waste discharges by Kanchanaburi-based mining company Lead Concentrates (Thailand), have twice won a historic lawsuit.

    In January 2013, they won a case against the Pollution Control...

  • Thailand and the Lao PDR have agreed on cross-border pollution management efforts

    Jul 14 2016

    BANGKOK, 14 July 2016 (NNT) - Thailand and the Lao PDR have agreed on pollution management efforts and ways to cope with cross-border pollution, particularly wildfire smoke.

    Director-General of the Pollution Control Department (PCD) Wijarn Simachaya said from May 31 to July 14, the PCD had held a workshop to enhance the work capabilities of the staff of the newly established pollution control department of the Lao PDR. The workshop focused on field operations and shared Thailand’s expertise on dealing with airborne pollution such as smoke from wildfires, hazardous waste management and analyzing chemical samples from laboratories.

    He said that Thailand has expressed its...

  • Formosa to pay US$500mil. compensation for environmental disaster in central Vietnam

    Jun 30 2016

    Formosa also made five commitments, including $500 million of compensation. It was the official information released at a government press conference in Hanoi this afternoon.

    The press conference attracted public attention since it released the long-awaited official causes of mass fish deaths in the central coastal provinces of Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, Quang Tri and Thua Thien Hue.

    At the press conference, a record of Hung Nghiep Formosa Ha Tinh Limited Company Chairman Chen Yuan Cheng’s apology to Vietnamese people was also released.

    In his speech, Chen, on behalf of the company’s 6,300 officials and workers, accepted responsibility and offered an apology to the...

  • Pollution Control Dept to restore Khli Ti Stream in Kanchanaburi Province after lead contamination

    Jun 28 2016

    KANCHANABURI, 28 June 2016 (NNT) - The Pollution Control Department is preparing to restore Khli Ti Stream in Kanchanaburi province after lead contamination. The project is expected to take 1,000 days and has a budget of 584 million baht.

    Director-General of the Pollution Control Department Wijarn Simachaya said that with a finalized budget of 584 million baht, the department has commenced with the e-bidding process, which will conclude on August 11. After the auction, the winning bidder will be able to begin project operations in the same month.

    The project includes the construction of landfills, restoring areas near the mineral processing plant, construct two additional...

  • Obama signs bipartisan chemical safety bill

    Jun 22 2016

    WASHINGTON — The Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act is the first major update to environmental legislation in two decades, overhauling the process for regulating toxic chemicals, allowing the Environmental Protection Agency to ban substances like asbestos, and limiting the secrecy around those chemicals after 10 years,

    But that's not the only reason why President Obama chose to sign the bill Wednesday in a public ceremony at the White House: It's also a rare example of bipartisanship from a Congress widely seen as unable to agree on much of anything.

    The bill passed the House 403 to 12 and the Senate by voice vote.

    "I want the American...

  • Heavy-handed actions crushing villagers

    Jun 20 2016

    The intensified crackdown on encroachment and logging by the military regime has dealt a heavy blow to villagers who live in harmony with nature in protected forest areas, while leaving most influential big timber businesses unscratched.

    The suppression followed two orders issued in 2014 by the National Council for Peace and Order designed to protect and reclaim the forests and which impose harsh punishment for encroachment on protected areas and for illegal logging.

    In 2014, the authorities conducted a raid in Ban Thung Pa Kha, in Mae Hong Son's Mae La Noi district, and rounded up 39 ethnic Pakayaw -- or Karen -- villagers who acquired small amounts of wood, 4-5 logs each...

  • PCD steers up five-year and 20-year pollution control plans

    Jun 11 2016

    BANGKOK, 11 June 2016 (NNT) – The Pollution Control Department (PCD) is preparing to execute five-year and 20-year pollution management plans alongside a new National Economic and Social Development Plan to ensure proper pollution control.

    PCD Director General Wijarn Simachaya said the department has issued the five-year and 20-year pollution management plans for periods during 2017-2021 and during 2017-2036 in order to push forward pollution control operations in Thailand.

    The 20-year plan is composed of six key measures, namely the promotion of environmental friendly products manufacturing; the promotion of environmental friendly products consumption; the enhancement in...