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Japan Environment Quarterly (JEQ)
Volume 15 | November 2016

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Voice of MOE Family in the World

Beyond Amazing Thailand


Satoshi Yoshida

First Secretary/Alternate Permanent, Representative of Japan to UNESCAP, International Organization Department, Embassy of Japan in Thailand

Transfer station of municipal waste in Bangkok

"Amazing Thailand" - you will hear this slogan upon your visit. Warm climate, natural beauty, fabulous beaches, temples, rich history and culture, good cuisines, low prices of goods, and its geographical advantage as air-hub in the region brought around 30 million people from abroad in 2015.

Maintaining its prominent status in tourism, however, requires Thailand to tackle environment issues. While we have seen gradual improvement in air quality in Bangkok over the last decade despite notorious traffic jams, there are remained challenges, for instance, in waste management. 1.1 kg/person of waste is generated each day, which already exceeds the level in Japan. Half of municipal solid waste was treated improperly (open-burning, etc.) besides illegal dumping of industrial waste. Open-dumping of waste is a long-standing practice in Thailand with few incinerators. Now the Thai government has prioritized these challenges to bring "Amazing and Beautiful Thailand" to reality.

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