Thailand has the means to develop green, sustainable economy: symposium speakers
Thailand has the advantage in developing a green, clean and sustainable economy, speakers said at the “Decarbonise Thailand Symposium 2022” at True Digital Park in Bangkok on Thursday.
Thailand Greenhouse Gas Management Organisation (TGO) executive director Kiatchai Maitriwong said the country emitted 372 million tonnes of greenhouse gas in 2018, accounting for 0.8% of global emissions of 50 billion tonnes per year.
“Greenhouse gas emitters in Thailand include electricity generation, transportation, industrial and agriculture sectors,” he explained. “However, Thailand has an advantage as its forests can absorb 86 million tonnes of greenhouse gas.”
Kiatchai said the key to tackling climate change is maintaining the balance between greenhouse gas emissions and storage, such as increasing forest areas, saving energy, adding renewable energy and using the carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) system.
“With cooperation between the government and the private sector, Thailand has a high chance of becoming the leader in green economy development,” Kiatchai said.
Thailand is working on a number of issues, such as campaigning among companies to undertake carbon footprint calculations, setting up a platform to facilitate carbon credit trade, and training climate change experts, he said.
Voluntary regulations will become compulsory to ensure Thailand can work with other countries to effectively and smoothly tackle climate change, Kiatchai said.
“The TGO is responsible for specifying regulations related to carbon footprint calculations in a bid to gain confidence among banks and investors,” he pointed out.
He also urged organisations to cooperate in enabling Thailand to achieve its net zero carbon emissions goal.
“We believe Thailand can do it,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Energy minister’s secretary, Pisut Painmanakul, said greenhouse gas emissions should be reduced as much as possible to achieve the net zero emissions goal by 2050.
He provided five milestones which would enable the country to achieve the goal, including renewable energy, energy efficiency, electrification, hydrogen fuel and the CCUS system.
“Hydrogen fuel is useful as it can power gas turbines and vehicles,” he noted.
Thailand also has an advantage in biology and attractiveness in drawing investments, he said.
“With smart technology, mechanisms and the Bio-Circular-Green economy model, Thailand can develop a green, clean and sustainable economy,” Pisut added.
Meanwhile, Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) chairman Kriengkrai Thiennukul said the industrial sector is adapting itself toward carbon neutrality as the country relies on exports.
He said world leaders already knew climate change could not be overlooked as it would result in exports disruption.
“To cope with this disruption, we need next-generation industries and the BCG economy model to develop Thailand’s economy so it becomes green, clean and sustainable,” he said.
The FTI has established a climate-change institution to advise industries on greenhouse gas reduction and carbon credit trading, Kriengkrai said.
He urged industries to adapt and adjust so Thailand can become the leader in a BCG economy.