“Let The Earth Sizzle”  these were not the words in Monday’s Bangkok Post report, but keeping the out dated and failed Kyoto Protocol alive and resisting calls for emission reduction targets for developing countries such as Thailand with large energy squandering sectors appears to amount to the same thing.

Further suggesting “positive impacts in terms of relocation of heavily polluting industries to Thailand” (see below), indicates a need to urge ASEAN to reject the so-called leadership of Thailand on this issue.

Please read on:

Thailand leads Asean drive to keep Kyoto Protocal(sic) alive

Published: 14/09/2009 at 12:00 AM
Newspaper section: Business

Thailand and Asean this month will affirm their opposition to phasing out the Kyoto Protocol after 2012 and creating new commitments to replace the existing accord on greenhouse gas emission reductions.

At the same time, Thailand does not want to set emission reduction targets despite calls from industrialised countries for developing nations to make such commitment, says the Office of Climate Change Co-ordination.

“Thailand, as the leader of Southeast Asian nations, will make our stance clear that we are against the phasing out of Kyoto Protocol once it expires in 2012. And we do not want to see any new commitment be created to replace the Kyoto,” said Areewattana Tummakird, the director of the office at the National Resources and Environmental Policy and Planning.

“There are attempts from developed countries to see developing countries share the commitment. But Thailand and our peers in Asean – like other developing nations – do not want to have that legally binding.”

The Kyoto Protocol, which took effect in 2005, was ratified by industrialised countries to cut their collective greenhouse gas emissions by 5.2% from 1990 levels, with varied national limitations.

Thailand will host the Bangkok Climate Change Talks from Sept 28 to Oct 9 as the last major global negotiations before the Copenhagen talks to be held in December.

Thailand emits an estimated 344 million tonnes of greenhouse gases a year.

Mrs Areewattana said Thailand also had yet to decide whether to support a sectoral approach to emissions reduction, which is expected to be a major topic in Copenhagen.

The sectoral approach involves organised action by key producers in specific industry sectors and their host governments to address emissions from their products and processes.

“The sectoral approach still draws huge debate and for Thailand, we have not come up with clear decision about our stance on the issue,” she said.

“In the short term, it should create some positive impacts in terms of relocation of heavily polluting industries to Thailand but in the long term, we will not be able to avoid the suffering of growing environmental impacts.”

Industries such as steel, petrochemical,s cement, paper and power generation are the primary targets of the sectoral approach.

“Thai manufacturers in those sectors have been aware of possible negative impacts (of a sectoral approach). But I think it will need some time to take effect,” Mrs Areewattana said.