Maptaput residents fight coal plant

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Maptaput-area residents are again fighting expansion of the industrial state, this time filing a petition to have authorities deny a permit to build a coal energy plant.

Residents committee leader Vichian Sakcharoen submitted a letter to the Rayong Industry Department Dec. 28 to oppose licensing of the Thai General Coal and Coke Co. plant. They claim the company has refused to divulge information on the environmental impact the plant would have.

Maptaput-area residents discuss filing a petition to have authorities deny a permit to build a coal energy plant.Maptaput-area residents discuss filing a petition to have authorities deny a permit to build a coal energy plant.

Industry Department spokesman Bandit Thongsricharoen said the project has not been approved and is only at the public hearing stage. He said both the company and the residents’ views would be heard.

Rayong residents have opposed construction of the power plant for more than two years, claiming it will only add to the environmental dangers posed by the industrial estate. They hope recent court rulings requiring industry and government to better monitor and protect nearby neighborhoods will again prove successful.