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More sewage treatment for Phuket

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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More sewage treatment for Phuket | The Thaiger

PHUKET: Karon Municipality will levy charges on hotels, restaurants and other small businesses in the area for the wastewater they produce.

The scheme, to start in October, will affect hotels and businesses in Karon, Kata and Kata Noi.

Restaurants will be charged a flat rate of 5.25 baht per operating square meter, and hotels will be billed at 84 baht per room.

The move, in line with “the polluter pays” principle, is an attempt to share wastewater treatment costs among the hotels and businesses responsible for producing untreated effluent.

Karon Mayor Thawee Thongcham said most large hotels in the district already have their own wastewater treatment facilities, some with very high standards.

The law requires that wastewater discharged into public waterways must not exceed 20 mg/L in Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD) levels, a key indicator of water quality.

Wastewater that exceeds 20 mg/L in BOD levels is considered polluted.

The wastewater discharged from hotels in Karon that flows into the sea usually has 7 or 8 mg/L in BOD levels, which is very good.

“But many restaurants and small businesses have no wastewater treatment capacity whatsoever,” Mayor Thawee said.

“We have come up with a target for the funds we need for wastewater treatment in the district to make sure water discharged into the environment will not cause any degradation.

“We cannot charge only households and small businesses for this, because they will feel overburdened. None of the businesses want to admit that they discharge polluted water into the waterways,” he added.

Tourism is the main industry in the district, with more than 90% of businesses relying on foreign visitors for their livelihood.

Hence businesses and hotels have a common interest in looking after the quality of the beaches and environment.

Patong and Phuket City Municipalities also have similar schemes in place that involve private-sector wastewater treatment.

Cherng Talay Municipality is in the process of planning a similar scheme and Kamala has applied for funding for seven small wastewater treatment plants under the government’s Thai Khem Kaeng (Strong Thailand) economic stimulus package.

Municipalities and government agencies in Phuket must coordinate work better so different environmental protection policies will complement each other, Mayor Thawee added.

Karon Municipality has a system that is able to treat 6,000 cubic meters of wastewater per day. During the low season, the system operates below capacity at 3,000 to 4,000 cubic meters per day.

In the high season, however, total wastewater exceeds 8,000 cubic meters per day.
The municipality is planning to upgrade the system to increase capacity to 12,000 cubic meters per day.

It is projected that the upgrade will cost up to 200 million baht.

— Anand Singh

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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

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Crime

British tourist killed at Phuket resort, Norwegian charged

May Taylor

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British tourist killed at Phuket resort, Norwegian charged | The Thaiger

PHOTO: Tourist Assistance Centre

A late night fight that broke out at a Karon resort has ended in a Norwegian man killing a British tourist.

The fight started at 4.00am, when British national Amitpal Singh Bajaj, who was on holiday with his Singaporean wife and two young children, confronted Roger Bullman over the amount of noise coming from his room.

Mr Bullman was drunk, and security had already visited his room twice to ask him to keep the noise down. When Mr Bajaj confronted him, he stabbed Mr Bullman in the shoulder with a steak knife.

Mr Bullman, trained in martial arts, then got the British man in a choke hold and maintained his grip on him. He says he did not mean to kill him, and did not think he had.

He has been charged and released on bail by the Phuket Provincial Court. He must now remain in Thailand until the court hearing.

British consular officials are assisting Mr Bajaj’s family in the wake of the tragedy.

SOURCE: ThaiVisa and The Phuket News

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Environment

The second baby dugong ‘Yamil’ dies in Phuket

The Thaiger

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The second baby dugong ‘Yamil’ dies in Phuket | The Thaiger

The second young dugong, being cared for by vets at the Phuket Marine Biological Centre, has died.

Yamil, the baby dugong stranded on a Krabi beach on July 1, died of “shock and cardiac arrest” last night (Thursday) after suffering indigestion and gastroparesis.

The Department of Marine and Coastal Resources report that Yamil was sent from the Phuket Marine Biological Centre to Vachira Hospital last evening for an endoscopy to observe its gastrointestinal tract, which was found to be full of sea grass – a dugong’s normal food.

“But the sea grass had obstructed Yamil’s gut, causing its digestive system to stop functioning. This resulted in a buildup of gas in the digestive system, leading to the rupture of blood vessels and infection.”

Her Royal Highness Princess Sirivannavari named the dugong ‘Yamil’ when he was moved from Krabi to Phuket for treatment and rehabilitation by marine vets. The animal was originally rescued by villagers from a Krabi beach where it washed up. His care has been sponsored by the Princess. Yamil, in the Yawi dialect, means “handsome young man of the sea”.

Last Friday night, baby dugong ‘Mariam’ died of shock while being treated in protected area near Koh Libong in Trang province.  Vets later found several pieces of plastic in its stomach.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

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Business

Official complaint filed with the DSI over The Peaks Residences Condominium in Phuket

The Thaiger

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Official complaint filed with the DSI over The Peaks Residences Condominium in Phuket | The Thaiger

PHOTO: Inspections at the property in March this year – Kritsada Mueanhawong

Bangkok MP Sira Jenjaka has gone ahead and filed a long list of formal complaints over The Peaks Residences Condominium project being built in the hills above Kata Noi in Phuket.

The Palang Pracharat MP has also claimed to have had death threats made against him over his investigations and accusations over the condo’s land titles and ownership in recent weeks.

The MP filed an official complaint with the Department of Special Investigation chief in Bangkok this morning.

The complaint alleges that the Karon Mayor Tawee Thongcham and the municipality “neglected their duties” by issuing permits to Kata Beach Co Ltd, the developer of the The Peaks Residences Condominium.

In February this year the Karon OrBorTor issued a construction permit for the project but in April municipal officials also sent a letter acknowledging the ongoing legal proceedings over the legitimacy of the land title, the NorSor 3 Kor Number 1863.

The complaint alleges that the project is being built on land with a NorSor 3 Kor No. 1863 land title. The complainants allege that the legal land document would have had to have been presented to obtain building permits and construction to proceed. But they claim that, as the NorSor 3 Kor for that land was under consideration by the Administrative Court, a legal building permit could not be issued.

In August 2017, the Regional Administrative Court ruled that the NorSor 3 Kor No. 1863 land title was invalid. Furthermore it determined that the land was “protected forest land”.

The DSI formally received the complaint documents this morning.

Meanwhile, the developer of The Peaks Residences Condominium, Manassanan Nararattanawee, the CEO of Kata Beach Co Ltd, maintains that the project’s paperwork is all “proper’ and that “everything is under the law”.

“Our company has already suspended construction to wait for the judgment of the Supreme Administrative Court.”

Officials from the Internal Security Operations Command inspected the property in March this year as the owners promised to ‘slow down’ construction. Read that story HERE.

Official complaint filed with the DSI over The Peaks Residences Condominium in Phuket | News by The Thaiger

Official complaint filed with the DSI over The Peaks Residences Condominium in Phuket | News by The Thaiger

PHOTO: Department of Special Investigations

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