Electric power is the electricity generation business’ product. RATCH thus strives to optimize production efficiency and keep environmental impacts below regulatory requirements, to ensure the electric power is environmental-friendly. The approach also reflects the Company’s responsibility for its products, in line with Target 12.5: Substantially reduce waste generation through prevention, reduction, recycling and reuse under SDG 12 (Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns).

Environmental management for the production of environmental-friendly electric power

Resource utilization in electricity generation

All power plants emphasize the most efficient utilization of fuels, energy and raw water which are the most important raw materials of electricity generation, for cost benefits as well as the benefits to the environment and community.

Fuel consumption and heat utilization

The following is fuel consumption and gross electric output of RATCH-controlled power plants - Ratchaburi Power Plant, Tri Energy Power Plant, Nava Nakorn Electricity Power Plant, Berkprai Cogeneration Power Plant and RATCH Cogeneration Power Plant in Thailand as well as Kemerton Power Station and Townsville Power Station in Australia:

Water consumption

Power plants in Ratchaburi Province use raw water primarily from Mae Klong River, a major river in the province that receives water from Vajiralongkorn Dam,
Tha Thung Na Dam and Mae Klong Dam. As the river chiefly supports irrigation and agriculture, RATCH Group’s power plants give importance to the dams’ water releases and raw water usage. The data is the basis for the assessment of risks relating to water shortage and conflicts with community over water as well as water stress accordingly to World Resources Institute (Aqueduct Water Risk Atlas and the Water Risk Filter). The monitoring showed there was no fight over water and no sign of shortage in the river, from upstream to downstream.

Water Management

  • Adopt a water recycling method for cooling towers, which improves water quality and hence allows more cycles of cooling water.
  • Recycle water by treating water with the Reversed Osmosis (RO) and Ultra Filter systems, improving the quality of treated water and reusing the water in the production process.

Volume of recycled water after treatment by RO and Ultra Filter systems at Ratchaburi Power Plant

Power plants’ energy saving

RATCH Group’s power plants have put in place the energy efficiency and conservation plan, aimed at reducing energy consumption and raising renewable energy. For instance, during a reserved shutdown, Ratchaburi Thermal Power Plant was powered by solar panels floating on its reservoir, which reduced production cost, fuel consumption and Scope 2 GHG emissions.

RATCH intends to deliver good environmental management that concerns the quality of air, water, noise, waste and the ecosystem of power plants in accordance with laws and international standards, to earn public recognition. Its power plants thus put in place the environmental management system that covers preventive and elimination measures as well as continuous monitoring on environmental quality within power plants and in community. The environmental data, preventive measures and impact management approaches are reported to the Office of Natural Resources and Environment Policy and Planning every six months. In addition, the ISO14001 environmental standard was applied to enhance the management efficiency such as Ratchaburi Power Plant, the Company’s main asset.

In 2020, the power plants completely operated accordingly to environmental laws. They experienced no complaints or penalties relating to incompliance or violations.

Air quality management

RATCH-controlled power plants are mainly powered by natural gas, with some using diesel and bunker oil as secondary fuel. Continuous Emission Monitoring System (CEMs) is installed at the top of the stack of all power plants, to monitor the emitted pollutants. Real-time data is reported to the operation control rooms and the Department of Pollution Control. At Ratchaburi Power Plant, the data is also displayed in front of the power plant.

PM 2.5 alert

Ratchaburi Power Plant has measured fine particulate matter PM2.5 in Ban Chaonua community nearby the power plant, and started measuring PM2.5 in March and September. It found that the level stays in the level that will not cause impacts on the community quality of life and the environment. The measuring will be conducted every year to surveillance air quality situation of the community.

As a member of Thailand Business Council for Sustainable Development (TBCSD) and Thailand Environment Institute (TEI), the company helps drive to the PM2.5 problem solving through supporting fuel consumption reducing, campaign against burning and compliance with measures to reduce impacts on operators

More Info: โครงการรวมพลัง "ลดฝุ่น PM2.5"

Wastewater management

Wastewater from power plants and an office building is treated separately. Parts of treated water are reused, for example, to water demonstration agricultural fields and trees. The rest are recycled and reused before discharge to the last water treatment pond. There, the Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD) and Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) are measured and the results are reported to the Department of Industrial Works through an online system, before being discharged to the natural water channels outside the power plant.

Ratchaburi Power Plant improves the quality of some treated water through the reversed osmosis filter system and reuses the water in the production process. It also checks the quality of water at the discharge point, above and below the discharge point, to ensure that discharged water will not send negative impacts on the natural water channel and that the community downstream can use water safely.

Waste management

All power plants emphasize the 3Rs principle in managing waste, to single out reusable and recyclable waste for the production process and other purposes. They also choose disposal methods that reduce waste to landfill as much as possible; for example, using waste as raw materials for the manufacturing of other products or burning in kilns to produce energy. The efforts are to prevent negative impacts on the environment like contamination to soil, surface and underground water, and the food chain.

Noise management

Noise in power plants is chiefly generated by generators, water pumps or maintenance activities. Silencers are installed to fully cover the machine. Buffers for noise control are in place and operators are required to wear proper protection gears. Noise level is monitored and benchmarked against standard limit, to ensure zero impacts on job operators and the community.

In 2020, the community around the power plant filed no complaint regarding to noise level.

Ratchaburi Power Plant’s environmental impact management involves the maintenance of ecological balance, to benefit all living beings in the area and to increase biodiversity.

The power plant has monitored biodiversity change by focusing on 4 categories of species namely mammalians, birds, reptiles, and amphibians. Its efforts entail the preservation of wetlands, which serve as the animals’ habitat and the food chain of plants and animals.

Since the construction began in 1997, the power plant has conducted biannual surveys on the number, diversity, population, dispersal, concentration and status of wild animals, one in the rainy season (August) and the other in the dry season (December). The survey covers the 1-square kilometer of the power plant’s buffer area. The results in the past 23 years the ecosystem of the buffer area thrived and successfully coexisted with the power plant’s operations.

In 2020, Ratchaburi Power Plant found 100 species of wild animals which are:

  • 72 bird species
  • 6 mammal species
  • 9 amphibian species
  • 13 reptile species

Wildlife categorized by conservation status

Aside from the conservation of the power plant’s ecosystem, RATCH supports biodiversity conservation in community forests through the “Love the Forest and the Community Project”. The project has been implemented in cooperation with the Royal Forest Department since 2008. The community forests serve as the nation’s natural carbon sinks.

More Info: โครงการคนรักษ์ป่า ป่ารักชุมชน