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Map Ta Phut Industrial Area, Thailand

Map Ta Phut industrial area is the largest petrochemical complex in Thailand. Its activities have been related to air and water pollution in the area. A new expansion is under way.


Map Ta Phut is a middle-size city located in eastern Thailand, in the province of Rayong, between the touristy areas of Pattaya and Koh Samet. In 1990, the government officially opened the Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate, a large industrial park focused on the petrochemical industry and related sectors. The Industrial Estate was one of the flagship projects of the Eastern Seaboard Development Programme, a massive infrastructure development plan aimed at creating an industrial base for Thailand's modernization. Map Ta Phut industrial area would quickly grow and today it houses five industrial estates, one deep-sea port, and 151 major factories, including petrochemical plants, oil refineries, coal-fired power stations, and iron and steel facilities. 

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Basic Data
Name of conflict:Map Ta Phut Industrial Area, Thailand
State or province:Rayong
Location of conflict:Map Ta Phut
Accuracy of locationHIGH (Local level)
Source of Conflict
Type of conflict: 1st level:Industrial and Utilities conflicts
Type of conflict: 2nd level :Metal refineries
Chemical industries
Thermal power plants
Ports and airport projects
Oil and gas refining
Specific commodities:Coal
Chemical products
Iron ore
Manufactured Products
Project Details and Actors
Project details:

The government has approved 13 billion baths (around USD416 million) for the expansion of Map Ta Phut.

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Project area:16,600
Level of Investment:415,870,000
Type of populationSemi-urban
Affected Population:49,000
Start of the conflict:01/01/1990
Company names or state enterprises:Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand from Thailand
PTT Public Company Limited (PTT) from Thailand
Relevant government actors:Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand (IEAT), Ministry of Industry, National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO)
Environmental justice organizations (and other supporters) and their websites, if available:People's Eastern Network
Conflict and Mobilization
IntensityLOW (some local organising)
Reaction stageIn REACTION to the implementation (during construction or operation)
Groups mobilizing:Local ejos
Local scientists/professionals
Fisher people
Forms of mobilization:Development of a network/collective action
Lawsuits, court cases, judicial activism
Media based activism/alternative media
Objections to the EIA
Street protest/marches
Impacts of the project
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Air pollution, Soil contamination, Oil spills, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion, Noise pollution
Health ImpactsVisible: Accidents, Occupational disease and accidents, Deaths, Other environmental related diseases
Other Health impactsIn 2012, a explosion at a factory that produced synthetic materials killed 12 and injured another 129 people [4]
Socio-economical ImpactsVisible: Violations of human rights, Displacement, Land dispossession
Potential: Loss of livelihood
Project StatusIn operation
Conflict outcome / response:Local Communities' demands ignored
In 2012, a explosion at a factory that produced synthetic materials killed 12 and injured another 129 people [4]. In 2013, the Thai state-owned oil company PTT, that owns facilities in Map Ta Phut, accidentally spilled oil in the area affecting the nearby island of Koh Samet
Do you consider this an environmental justice success? Was environmental justice served?:No
Briefly explain:The industrial area has expanded over the last years and companies have been able to continue their activities despite the environmental and health concerns. A new expansion is under way.
Sources and Materials
Links to general newspaper articles, blogs or other websites

[3] Thirsty for justice, Transparency and Poor People's Struggle for Clean Water in Indonesia, Mongolia and Thailand, World Resource Institute, 2017
[click to view]

[7] Bt12 bn budget backs Smart Park plan, The Nation, February 08, 2018
[click to view]

[1]Thai court orders suspension of 76 industrial projects, Reuters, Sept 29, 2009
[click to view]

[4] Factory blast at Map Ta Phut (updated), Bangkok Post, May 06, 2012
[click to view]

[5] Thailand oil spill: Tourists abandon blackened Koh Samet beach, CNN, August 1, 2013
[click to view]

[8] Fishermen fight Map Ta Phut port expansion, Bangkok Post, Oct 30, 2015
[click to view]

[2] Residents, activists file court complaints over coal plant, The Nation, July 04, 2012
[click to view]

[6] B13bn assigned to Map Ta Phut, Bangkok Post, Jan 12, 2018
[click to view]

Related media links to videos, campaigns, social network

[click to view]

Other documents

Source: Matcha Porpa ‏ @prapart2012 24 may. 2014 Highest from Chimney view, Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate
[click to view]

Source: Greenpeace Greenpeace activists dressed as patients and lying on a hospital bed today gathered in front of Thailand's Ministry of Industry to demand that the government immediately declare Map Ta Phut a Pollution Control Zone. The activists carried banners saying "STOP KILLING MAP TA PHUT"
[click to view]

Source: By THE NATION A group of protesters rallied outside Government House to demand that the authorities urgently start assisting those affected by the recent factory explosion in Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate in Rayong province.
[click to view]

Meta information
Contributor:Laura Villadiego, Carro de Combate, [email protected]
Last update23/03/2018
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