Environmental Management and Industrial Development
The rapid economic growth resulting
from industrialization and export promotion has been
accompanied by a deterioration in environmental quality.
Waste discharge has serious effects both within and
outside the factories' premises. Recognizing that a
deterioration environment may impact both economic development
and the quality of life of the Thai people, the government
made provisions in the Sixth National Development Plan
to integrate the needs of environmental protection and
conservation with the needs of the expanding industrial
The Seventh Plan set definite targets
to improve environmental quality throughout the country.
This was a departure from previous plans on a number
of accounts. Most significant was the recognition that
the task ahead was beyond the scope of government alone.
The formulation of this plan was intended to be a consensus-building
exercise. It relied on the cooperative effort of all
sectors, including government agencies, state enterprises
and universities, the private sector, and non-government
There are many laws and regulations
pertaining to the environment. In June of 1992, a new
National Environmental Quality Act replaced the 1975
National Environment Act, creating a stronger foundation
for a system of national environmental management.
In April 1992, a new Hazardous Substances
Act introduced a comprehensive control framework for
the possession, use and handling of all substances considered
mutation-inducing, infectious explosive flammable and
corrosive. Later that year, a new Factories Act retained
the basic restrictions of the former one but included
strict pollution regulations and tougher penalties.
Firms proposing investments in industries, such as petrochemicals,
industrial estates, steel industries which might harm
the environment, are required to perform an environmental-impact
study prior to receiving permission to set up factories.
There are also several agencies which
deal with various aspects of environmental regulation
and management in the country, including divisions of
the Ministry of Industry, the Ministry of Science, Technology
and Environment, the Ministry of Public Health, the
Ministry of Interior, and the Ministry of Transport