Political parties unveil environment and clean air policies
Despite the overwhelming news coverage given to on-going political bickering dominating the current election campaign, several politicians still manage to make their voices heard on crucial – yet under-reported — issues, especially the environment.
An election debate organized by Thai PBS on Thursday night was one forum for them to put forth their vision of Thailand with less pollution and environmental degradation.
“We support the industries that promote people’s well-being, take the environment into account, consider community and human rights as well as community-centered approach,” said Pornthip Hongchai from Saman Chon or Commoners party.
Saman Chon party was founded by a group of villagers affected fallouts from industries that created environmental problems, including gold mining. It has a strong stand against all forms of industries that solely focus on making money rather than on people’s livelihood.
Damrong Pidet, a representative from Thai Forest Land Reclamation party, proposed the idea of increasing forest areas and reducing the use of chemicals to fight against climate change. He announced three major environmental policies. First, increase forest reserve from 33% to 55 %. Second, terminate agriculture crops in the upstream and preservation areas. Third, encouraging all government offices to used organic vegetables.
Plodprasop Suraswadi from Pheu Thai party proposed its environmentally friendly policies, including urgent afforestation of 50 million rais of land, reducing the use of plastic bags, tax reduction for electric car and bio-diesel, effective EIA, and environmental investment.
A representative from Democrat party, Kiat Sittheeamorn, said that economic growth does not have to be pursued at the expense of the ecosystem. The Democrat’s environment policies cover every sector from individuals, private enterprises to government sectors. Its green policies range from reducing the use of plastic bags, better waste management, industrial zoning, and tackling air pollution and PM2.5 at its root cause.