Publication Date

2008

Abstract

Pesticide policy has a substantial impact on health and environment. More than 2,000,000 people are suffering from exposures and use of pesticide each year. It is extremely dangerous for human beings to continue polluting our planet by using pesticides in agriculture. Green Revolution policies caused many changes in agricultural and food systems in Thailand. It has the 48th largest land area in the world but it now ranks fourth in the use of pesticides and it is referred to as a chemical dump. Even though the number of pesticide victims is most likely understated in official statistics, the workers having unsafe blood cholinesterase in high levels is strong evidence that pesticide policy in Thailand needs to change. This capstone is based on guidelines for SIT’s Policy Advocacy course-linked papers that present a product relevant to a campaign. In this case the product is a policy paper based on secondary literature and primary data collected by interviewing Thai NGO leaders. The paper discusses the history and level of pesticide use in Thailand; examines the impact of pesticides by using data from both Thailand and other nations; describes the government policies in health, agriculture, and environment, both those which have supported the growth of pesticide use and those which are supposed to deter the negative impacts of that use; and provides a brief overview of the sustainable agriculture movement in Thailand and its alternatives to pesticides. It concludes by identifying six problems that need to be solved if pesticide use is to be reduced or eliminated and, for each, provides specific recommendations for changing current policies or creating new ones in different ministries and local government. The paper is written to inform and support the work of advocates such as the Alternative Agriculture Network (AAN) of Thailand in their campaigns to reduce pesticide use in Thailand. The main targets of pesticide reduction policy reform are the National Health Commission, in accordance to the National Health Act B.E. 2550(2007) and the Committee on Agriculture and Cooperative Development Policy and Planning, in accordance to the Agricultural Economics Act of B.E. 2522.

Disciplines

Agricultural and Resource Economics | Environmental Health and Protection

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