Lower Klity Creek is the main source of water for the hundreds of Karen families living in the Thongpaphum district of Kanchanaburi province in western Thailand. For the last five decades, a lead factory has released toxic waste, poisoning the rivers and creeks and leading to illnesses and death from lead contamination in the water and food. The Jo family is one of the Karen families still living with the toxic contamination and living in unimaginable suffering. Even though the factory was shut down in 1998, the toxic legacy of poisoning remains. Although the villagers have fought and won court cases against the company to clean up the creek, so far the authorities have not provided any effective clean-up measures.
A Singaporean city dweller travels to the Thai countryside to learn more about sustainable food production and local farming knowledge. Sing Yee, a recent university graduate, shares insights from her stay, amidst conversations on farming, food, politics and development with other ASEAN youths and the host community.
Thailand’s military government has undertaken forced evictions of both businesses and villagers found using state lands such as national reserve forests and protected areas without legal land titles. This article looks at ongoing evictions in northeastern Thailand’s Phu Phan mountains, to present farmers’ perspectives on their struggles.
Seeds are at the heart of food production, but are increasingly controlled by a few multinational companies. No one expected “uneducated” farmers could breed viable crop seeds, but Thai groups have proved they have the right skills, and communities are drawing the benefit. In this process, small-scale farmers are opening alternative paths to the increasing monopolisation of our agricultural system
Bangkok’s ever-expanding electricity demand is contributing to environmental and social injustices through the generation of electricity far away from the city. This includes in the Mekong River basin, particularly through the expansion of hydropower dams in Laos.
Governments and developers promote large hydropower as clean energy necessary for economic development. In most cases, developers prepare Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs). But rather than raise questions about whether the dam should be built, EIAs become the first step to enable “river grabbing”
The ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), to be launched in 2015, aims to create a single market and production base. Dorothy Guerrero examines whether this advances socio-economic development in the ASEAN region, or results in damage to people’s general well-being, human rights and environmental security.