Proposal to set up environment court

The Nation
19 December 2014

The National Reform Council (NRC) has proposed to the Constitution Drafting Committee (CDC) the setting up of the country’s first environmental court, saying it would help speed up cases and help tackle environmental issues.

Bantoon Setthasiroj, from the NRC committee on natural resources and environment reform, said the plan to establish the “special court” was an attempt to speed up legal procedures, as this would allow judicial officials to work specifically on environmental trials.

He said an environmental court would also help tackle conflicts over resources and prevent the exploitation of natural resources by industrial groups and traders, which may tend to increase in the future.

“As businesses flourish in Thailand after the AEC [Asean Economic Community], the need for resources will see a sharp increase. Hence it is important that there are environmental courts in place to deal with any escalation in the number of conflicts over natural resources,” he said.

The idea has already drawn criticism from some groups.

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