MEA WINS 'AREA 2018 GREEN LEADERSHIP AWARD' FOR BANG KHUN THIAN COASTAL BARRIER
Mr. Chaiyong Puapongsakorn, Governor of the
Metropolitan Electricity Authority (MEA), together with Mr. Prasong Kumpradit, Assistant Governor of MEA, accepted the Green Leadership Award at the Asia Responsible Enterprise Awards 2018. MEA, the only government utilities organization in Thailand to receive an award at the event, received the accolade for its implementation of environmentally-responsible policies, which emphasize on the development of environmentally friendly innovations from the “Smart Metro Poles for Thailand’s Coastal Protection Project.”
Under this project, the MEA recycled electricity poles from the conversion project of the overhead powerlines to underground power cables to form a coastal erosion barrier at Bang Khun Thian. The award presentations were held on June 1, 2018 at the Manila Marriott Hotel, Manila, Philippines.
The MEA Governor revealed that MEA is the only public utilities organization in Thailand to have won the Asia Responsible Entreprise Awards in the Green Leadership category. The award recognizes the success of the concept of recycling old power poles to prevent coastal erosion at Bang Khun Thian. At present, the MEA is continuing to implement its underground project in the metropolitan area. Most recently, the project was undertaken along Phaholyothin, Phayathai, Sukhumvit, Sri Ayudhya, Ratchaprarop and Rama 1 Roads, which are all in the heart of Bangkok. MEA delivered 1,344 power poles to the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA), to support the development of a coastal erosion barrier for Bangkok’s Bang Khun Thian district and to promote reforestation in line with royal concepts.
Within the next five years, MEA aims to deliver 10,000 unused power poles to develop a coastal barrier at Bang Khun Thian of about 4.7 km in length as well as an additional 5,000 poles to the Royal Thai Navy to prevent erosion in the vicinity of Phra Chulachomklao Fort in Samut Prakan province.
The MEA’s power poles are constructed from concrete with a usable lifetime of around 30 years, or around 30 times more than a standard bamboo pole. Reinforced with steel wire, the poles are also flexible, able to bend by around 7-8 cm and resist lateral loads of up to 3.5 metric tons, effectively dissipating the strength of tidal currents and promoting sedimentation and the growth of saplings behind the barrier. The barriers also foster the rehabilitation of the natural environment with a return of many species of aquatic animals and birds, and improved chances of survival.
The MEA aims to complete a total of 214.6 km of underground Project by the year 2021. To date, 43.5 km or 20.3 percent of the total has been completed. However, in 2018, the MEA still plans to undertake more work on Wireless Road, an important economic area of the city, and is considering other areas too.
Organized by Enterprise Asia, an organization committed to the support of corporate social responsibility, the Asia Responsible Enterprise Awards (AREA) are now in their 10th year. The awards support the development of entrepreneurial potential in Asia for sustainable economic development in local communities, recognize organizations across the several categories of awards, and set positive examples for up-and-coming entrepreneurs. Awards are presented in six categories: Green Leadership Award, Investment in People Award, Health Promotion Award, Social Empowerment Award, Corporate Governance Award, and Responsible Business Leadership Award.