Thailand's leadership on LEDS
The Asia-Pacific Integrated Model (AIM) and policymaking for low carbon growth in Asia: A case study of Thailand
This case study shows how the Asia-Pacific Integrated Model (AIM) has been used in Thailand to inform policymaking for low carbon, climate resilient growth. AIM is a set of computer simulation models for assessing options – primarily policy and technology choices – to reduce or slow the growth of greenhouse gas emissions. Users can model a wide range of social and economic activities that contribute to greenhouse gas emissions and sequestration, including energy consumption, changing land use, and industrial production, and gain understanding on the resultant effects of greenhouse gas emissions on climate, the economy, and human welfare.
Thailand is the second largest economy in the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the second-largest emitter of CO2 in the ASEAN region after Indonesia. For more than a decade, the Thai government has applied AIM to assist with development of policies and initiatives to reduce the growth in greenhouse gas emissions, improve the efficiency of the economy, and follow a more sustainable development path.
Integrating waste management and renewable energy planning
Driven by concerns of energy security high dependence on imported fuels and environmental pollution due to improper waste disposal, Thailand has placed increasing emphasis on waste-to-energy options through its 10-year Renewable and Alternative Energy Development Plan (AEDP 2012-21). The plan presents a target of a 25% contribution of renewable and alternative energy sources by 2021, of which 30% is to come from bioenergy and municipal solid waste, representing an important step in the transition to a low carbon economy.
The focus on waste and agricultural residues in the AEDP is a good example of policy coordination and alignment with decentralised implementation. The AEDP objectives are aligned with those of the National Economic and Social Development Plan (NESDP) as well as laws for municipal level governance. As part of the strategy, pilot implementation targets city level actions aimed at scaling up capacity building and replication with increased efficiency in other cities within and outside of Thailand. The strategy is highly integrated at various levels of governance in terms of its strategic goals and its mode of implementation. Its linkages with national goals of energy security, climate change and export promotion are notable and demonstrate clear political direction and leadership.