Last update:
2018-07-19

Lut Lut / Than Phyo Thu coal power station, Myeik, Myanmar

‘Save our villages’. Residents from Lut Lut and Tamothe villages mobilize against the plans for a 50 MW coal-fired power plant to protect their farming and fishing-based livelihoods.


Description:

The plans to construct a 50 MW coal-fired power plant in Lut Lut village, about 20km away from Myeik, have provoked strong local opposition by residents. Lut Lut is a small village with 100 households and a population of about 400. Next to Lut Lut is Thamote village, with more than 700 households [1].

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Basic Data
Name of conflict:Lut Lut / Than Phyo Thu coal power station, Myeik, Myanmar
Country:Myanmar
State or province:Tanintharyi
(municipality or city/town)Lutlut village, Myeik township
Accuracy of locationHIGH (Local level)
Source of Conflict
Type of conflict: 1st level:Fossil Fuels and Climate Justice/Energy
Type of conflict: 2nd level :Thermal power plants
Specific commodities:Coal
Electricity
Land
Project Details and Actors
Project details:

The Myanmar Times reported that both the Than Phyo Thu Mining Company and Myeik Public Corporation are involved in the construction and operation of the power plant [1].

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Project area:65 ha (approx.)
Level of Investment:65,000,000
Type of populationRural
Affected Population:several hundred households
Start of the conflict:07/2012
Company names or state enterprises:Myeik Public Corporation from Myanmar
Than Phyo Thu Mining Co.,Ltd. from Myanmar
Relevant government actors:Myanmar Investment Commission (MIC)

Ministry of Electric Power

Tanintharyi Ministry for Electricity

and others
Environmental justice organizations (and other supporters) and their websites, if available:several organizations at the country level (see references, statement signed by 422 civil society organizations against coal [9])
Conflict and Mobilization
IntensityMEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)
Reaction stagePREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups mobilizing:Farmers
Local government/political parties
Neighbours/citizens/communities
Social movements
translation missing: en.m.mobilizing_groups.fisher_people
Forms of mobilization:Development of alternative proposals
Official complaint letters and petitions
Public campaigns
Street protest/marches
Impacts of the project
Environmental ImpactsPotential: Air pollution, Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Food insecurity (crop damage), Global warming, Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Soil contamination, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality
Health ImpactsVisible: Mental problems including stress, depression and suicide
Potential: Other Health impacts
Other Health impactsexposure to pollution from coal burning [6].
Socio-economical ImpactsPotential: Loss of livelihood, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Outcome
Project StatusPlanned (decision to go ahead eg EIA undertaken, etc)
Conflict outcome / response:Under negotiation
Application of existing regulations
Project temporarily suspended
Development of alternatives:The Thamote village administrator proposes to produce electricity from cleaner natural gas, which according to him is plentiful in the region. He furthermore argues that electricity supply should be managed by the public and not through private investments [1].
Do you consider this an environmental justice success? Was environmental justice served?:Not Sure
Briefly explain:The protests have been successful in raising awareness about the potential impacts of the plant coal power plant. The project has also been substantially delayed and currently seems to be shelved [8]. It is not clear whether the project is delayed/shelved because of the protests, or because of a lacking permission from the Myanmar Investment Commission, or a combination of both.
Sources and Materials
Related laws and legislations - Juridical texts related to the conflict

2014 Myanmar Electricity Law
[click to view]

2015 Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Procedure
[click to view]

2012 Environmental Conservation Law
[click to view]

References to published books, academic articles, movies or published documentaries

[7] PYO and KAN 2011 "Poison Clouds: Lessons from Burma's largest coal project at Tigyit". Pa-Oh Youth Organization (PYO) and Kyoju Action Network (KAN). (accessed online 11.06.2018).
[click to view]

[6] 2017 REPORT "Coal: a Public Health Crisis in Myanmar". Published by Greenpeace, Heinrich Böll Stiftung, Earthrights International, Alarm, Myanmar Green Network, 2017. (accessed online 29.06.2018).
[click to view]

Links to general newspaper articles, blogs or other websites

[5] DVB news, 14 January 2014 "Myeik residents protest coal plant plans"
[click to view]

[1] Myanmar Times, 15 March 2016 "Local resistance fails to halt Myeik coal-fired power plant"
[click to view]

[3] Mizzima news, 13 January 2014 "Protestors condemn plan for coal-fired power plant"
[click to view]

[11] Earth Rights International "Coal Moratorium and Renewable Energy in Myanmar" (accessed online 29.06.2018).
[click to view]

[9] Statement by 422 Civil Society Organizations from 13 December 2016 "Myanmar: Say no to coal and big dams" (accessed online 29.06.2018).
[click to view]

[10] Myanmar Times, 15 July 2013 "Government urged to abandon coal plans" (accessed online 29.06.2018).
[click to view]

[4] Steelguru, Power News, 15 January 2014 "Tanintharyi Region condemn plan for coal-fired power plant near Myeik"
[click to view]

[8] Sourcewatch.org entry "Myeik Than Phyo Thu power station"
[click to view]

[2] Myanmar Times, 13 August 2012, "Deal signed for 50MW Myeik power plant"
[click to view]

Other documents

Protests Source: DVB news, http://www.dvb.no/news/myeik-residents-protest-coal-plant-plans-burma-myanmar-burma-myanmar/36049
[click to view]

Project site Source: Myanmar Times, https://www.mmtimes.com/business/19465-local-resistance-fails-to-halt-myeik-coal-fired-power-plant.html
[click to view]

Meta information
Contributor:EJatlas Southeast Asia Team (ejatlas.asia"at"gmail.com)
Last update19/07/2018
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