A study tour to Japan was organized from October 22 to November 2, 2013, for 26 government officials from each of the three project counterpart organizations, namely the Pollution Control Department (PCD), the Department of Industrial Works (DIW), and the Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand (IEAT), as well as other relevant governmental agencies, including representatives from the Department of Agriculture (DOA), the Office of Traffic and Transport Policy and Planning (OTP), the 11th Regional Environmental Office, Rayong Provincial Industry Office, and Rayong Provincial Office of Natural Resources and Environment. Executive level officials, including Mr. Wichien Jungrungruang, Director-General of PCD, and Ms. Somchint Pilouk, Deputy Governor of IEAT, also participated in the study tour.
The study tour focused on three subjects, which were risk communication, PRTR data management, and practice of the private sector in Japan.
For risk communication, Saitama prefecture was selected as a model to follow. A lecture by prefecture officers, a visit to the Center of Environmental Science of Saitama (CESS), and a lecture by a citizen who is an alumni of environmental education of CESS provided an overall picture of risk communication practices implemented in Saitama prefecture.
Participants also visited the National Institute of Technology and Evaluation (NITE) to learn about PRTR data management in Japan.
Then the participants proceeded to Kitakyushu to visit Ube Industries, Ltd. to learn about private sector practices of PRTR. Ube Industries Ltd. received the grand prize of PRTR award in 2009 from the Ministry of Environment for their outstanding achievement. At Kitakyushu the participants also visited Kitakyushu eco-town and learnt about their risk communication practices. For this part of the tour, 5 participants from the Thai private sector, including Siam Cement Group and PTT, joined to share the findings and lessons. All participants presented their findings and lessons learnt at the final report session.