Wednesday, July 28, 2021

in-focus

Rayong factory told to pay 1.3bn baht compensation for poisoning farmland


A Rayong factory that leaked toxic heavy metals into surrounding farmland and waterways must pay more than 1.3 billion baht in compensation, the Pollution Control Department (PCD) said on Wednesday.

The Win Process Co Ltd factory located in Village No 4, Ban Khai District was investigated following complaints it was emitting wastewater and foul smells, said PCD director-general Atthaphon Charoenchansa.

Residents of nearby Nong Phawa village have already filed a lawsuit against the company with the Rayong court.

A PCD inspection in October 2020 found that hazardous substances had accumulated inside and outside the factory, a hazardous-waste processing and recycling plant.

Atthaphon said the factory's wells were highly acidic and contaminated with heavy metals, which had leaked to the outside environment. As a result, the surface water near the factory had high acidity, heavy metal contamination, and volatile organic compounds. This indicated that the factory was discharging waste to the outside, he added.

The PCD said compensation was required to cover the following:

1. Loss of income for locals in the amount of 47 million baht.

2. Inability to utilise local natural resources, for which the Bangbut Subdistrict Administrative Organization will sue for damages.

3. Expenses for environmental rehabilitation in the amount of 1.32 billion baht.

The PCD said it will send the compensation demand within 15 days. If the company refuses or ignores the demand, the PCD will take legal action by filing a lawsuit with the Civil Court.

Published : June 16, 2021

By : The Nation