Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has instructed all provinces to find locations to build waste-management facilities to properly manage garbage and produce alternative energy.
Speaking at the opening of an exhibition for Thursday's Thai Environment Day, Gen Prayut said the amount of household waste was a national problem so the entire country should brainstorm ways to reap benefits from garbage. He said the country still lacked a proper waste-management system and conflicts and protests continued to arise over suitable locations for garbage dumps. The problem must be solved with proper management , from garbage sorting to disposal, Gen Prayut said.
The prime minister asserted that Thailand should build waste-to-energy plants in every province where trash could be used to generate power, helping the country reduce its dependence on oil and gas.
"Every province should have a waste-management facility," the prime minister asserted. "And each province will have to locate the site and think how it will benefit local communities."
The premier said he previously discussed his ideas with waste-to-energy experts who confirmed that the incinerators could limit pollution, so the public should not protest. However, the public will need to be educated on Thailand's waste situation, including many tonnes the country produces and how much is properly managed.
To date, Thailand has just three waste-to-energy incinerators.
According to Thailand State of Pollution Report 2012, published by the Department of Pollution Control, the country generated approximately 24.73 million tonnes of municipal solid waste in 2012, or 67,577 tonnes a day. However, only 5.83 million tonnes was properly managed, mainly through the landfill system while the much smaller amounts were managed by integrated system and incinerator.