Greenpeace Donates Solar Systems to Thailand

Directors of 26 Greenpeace offices from around the world gathered recently in the village of Ban Krut, Thailand and received the blessing of Buddhist monks after personally handing over two solar PV systems to the local community.

PRACHUAP PROVINCE, Thailand – May 6, 2002 [] Greenpeace earlier installed the solar panels at the Thong Chai Thammachak temple in Ban Krut and at the Ban Nong Pu Lok school in Bo Nok to show the Thai government that the local community is serious in its desire for Renewable Energy alternatives instead of the proposed coal fired power stations. For the past 8 years, people of Ban Krut and Bo Nok in the province of Prachuap Khiri Khan have opposed plans by U.S. energy company Edison and Thai company, Gulf Power to build two coal fired power stations in the region. A consortium of US, Japanese, Hong Kong and Thai companies funds the proposed plants. “Thailand does need energy – energy from the sun, wind and the ocean. But not from dirty, old fashioned technology dumped on them by big international companies like Edison,” said Greenpeace International’s executive director Gerd Leipold. “If we are to prevent dangerous climate change we need a massive global boost in these renewable technologies.” “Later this year, governments from around the world will meet at the Johannesburg Earth Summit. Two billion people globally live without access to electricity. Greenpeace is asking governments at the Earth Summit to kick start the renewables age by committing to massive investments in safe, clean power to these people without harming the climate.” In January when the Prime Minister of Thailand visited the site of the proposed coal-fired power plant in the province of Prachuap Khiri Khan, 20,000 protestors met him. He is expected to announce a decision on whether or not to cancel the plants in the very near future. “The Thai government is being pressured by rich multinational banks and companies that are backing the power station proposal,” said John Passacantando, Executive Director of Greenpeace USA. “It’s time that the wishes of the Thai people were heard. They don’t want dirty energy exports from companies like Edison from the US which dump unwanted technology on poorer communities in the South.”
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