Mai Khot power station
The Mai Khot power station, also known as the Mong Kok power station, was a proposed 405-megawatt (MW) power station in Shan, Myanmar.
The map below shows Shan, the approximate location where the plant would have been built, about 40 kms north of Thailand’s Chiang Rai border.
The project was proposed as a joint operation between the Italian-Thai Company and Thailand’s Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT). EGAT expected the plant to generate up to 15,000 MW electricity power over the next 20 years. The agreement with the Burmese government was to be renewed every five years; the total project tenure was 25 years. In 2011, it was reported that Burma would begin exporting and selling the energy to the Chiang Rai region of northern Thailand in early 2016, according to officials.
The project was planned for operation in 2017, with 369 of the 405 MW to be directed to Thailand.
In 2014, it was reported that Italian-Thai was interested in the power station but had halted its role in it.
In its 2015 Annual Report, Italian-Thai Company confirmed it was debating its investment in the power station. The project was not mentioned in the company's 2016 Annual Report, and appears abandoned.
EGAT and the Burmese government signed an agreement to produce 1.5 million tons of coal annually for 10 years and to build a 405 MW thermal power station of which 369 MW would be sold to Thailand. The coal to be used in the power units would be produced by the Mae Mao coalmine and imported coal.
About 20 villages south of Mogok were forcibly relocated in March 2011 for the plans. The military regime ordered the villagers to sell their farmland at a set price of 20,000 kyat (US$ 25) per acre to the company. Local residents said the authorities violated the human rights of local villagers.
The mine was expected to be operational in 2017.
In July 2011, environmental groups and local villagers in Burma and Thailand launched a protest against the Mong Kok coal-mining project. The protesters said the project would include about 200 trucks that would transport coal daily through the area causing noise and coal dust pollution. The report compiled by the Mong Kok activist group said Burmese military units persecuted and tortured local villagers in 2007 when it accused them of giving support to the Shan State Army – South (SSA-S). In addition, about 1,000 Shan, Akha, and Lahu villagers fled to Thailand in fear of persecution.
Residents in northern Thailand also worried that pollution would affect the Kok River. The Kok River is a main waterway for people in northern Thailand and is a popular tourist attraction. The power station was projected to use water from the Kok River and wastewater from the power station would be put into the river again. The report said the project would emit many chemicals and destroy wildlife and plants in the region.
Thai social groups sent letters and expressed their opposition to the project to the Thai Human Rights Commission, the Thai Lawyers Council, and the Chiang Rai authorities starting in at least 2009.
Project Details of power station
- Sponsor: Italian-Thai Company, Thailand’s Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand
- Parent company:
- Location: Shan, Myanmar
- Coordinates: 21.5, 98 (approximate)
- Status: Cancelled
- Capacity: 405 MW
- Start date:
- Coal Type:
- Coal Source: Mai Khot mine
- Source of financing:
Resources and articles
- "Local people protest coal mining in eastern Shan State," Mizzima, July 25, 2011
- Pa’O Youth Organisation, "Poison Clouds: Lessons from Burma’s largest coal project at Tigyit," Pa’O Youth Organisation, January 2011 (pdf)
- "Changing priorities: Coal is set to take a greater share of the country’s energy mix," Oxford Business Group, October 17, 2014
- "Collaborative Research Between ERI/PAR," The Sukosol Bangkok, April 4, 2014
- "Annual report," Italian-Thai Company, March 2015
- "Annual report," Italian-Thai Company, February 2017
- "Energy-sector delegation to visit Myanmar," The Nation, June 2, 2012