Water is essential for business and livelihood including agricultural and industrial processes. Global climate change will increase water scarcity and make existing water resources more volatile. Since PTT Group’s major production assets with significant water use locates in the eastern region of Thailand (Chonburi and Rayong Provinces), PTT declared efficient water management as one of its business risks. Moreover, the eastern region is being developed into the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) to become the hub of business and investment for Thailand and the ASEAN region. The development results in increasing water demand from all sectors, including consumer, agriculture, ecological conservation, and Eastern industrial sectors.
At present, main water sources in Rayong Province consist of Dok Krai Reservoir, Nong Pla Lai Reservoir, Khlong Yai Reservoir, and Prasae Reservoir. These important reservoirs are linked to the reservoir system in Chonburi Province, covering the Klong Yai Basin, Chonburi Basin, and West Rayong Basin. Main water sources in Chonburi province consists of Bang Phra Reservoir and Nong Kho Reservoir. All 6 water sources have a capacity of 669 million cubic meters.
Water Risk Management
To ensure efficient water management, PTT has established the PTT Group Water Management Team, consisting of water and utilities management experts. The Team’s tasks are to monitor, evaluate, report water situations in the eastern part of Thailand, and forecast the need for water in industrial estates during the next 10 years as part of effective water management. In addition, the Team also takes into consideration the most efficient management to minimize the adverse effects to the environment and the communities regarding the EEC Development. A risk management plan is in place to address possible draught events. These short-term and long-term operation plans are submitted to the management of companies within the group and the Risk Management & Internal Control Committee on a quarterly basis.
Since 2012, the PTT Group Water Management Team joined the Rayong Province’s eastern water management committee. The committee consists of representatives from the public and private sector and East Water Co., Ltd. who monitor and evaluate water situations before announcing measures to reduce risks and mitigate impacts in a timely manner. Major water reservoirs in the area are closely monitored, and measures are issued to manage water before the onset of a draught to ensure long term water availability. Furthermore, the committee investigates alternative water reservoirs to increase water resources for industrial production, which includes building new water reserves and setting up a desalination unit to maintain PTT Group’s production security, reducing impact from shortage of water or draught events, and avoiding possible water conflicts between industry and communities.
PTT Group conducted a risk assessment of water management in its own operating area, covering issues related to water shortages, higher water demand, higher water prices, laws and regulations, as well as possible conflicts with stakeholders. The risk assessment uses data from both real-world data and data from the internationally recognized future water situation tools such as IPIECA Global Water Tool for Oil & Gas and WRI Aqueduct to assess the risks associated with current and future use of water. The assessment result shows that PTT Group’s operating area in the eastern region is at a moderate risk level.
Water Management Progress
PTT Group has implemented water management to reduce the risk of water shortages and create benefits for the community as follows.
- Increase of water reserves, e.g., expansion of water reservoirs, seeking new water sources, etc.
- Research and Development for desalination
- Sustainable consumption and 3Rs Principles (Reduce/ Reuse/ Recycle)
- Corporate Social Responsibility
The PTT Group Water Management Team created a strategy under the 3Rs principles and an effluent water management plan. The Team facilitates best practice sharing of water management within the group. The team is responsible for monitoring and encouraging water management projects in Rayong and Chonburi Provinces based on the 3Rs principles as follows:
- Changing the water cooling system in its power plant from an open to a closed system to reduce water consumption
- Introducing the blow-down tank to reduce water consumed in the cooling process before releasing to wastewater treatment and using blow-down water for irrigation
- Implementing Reverse Osmosis Intermediated project to reuse water for cooling purpose
- Reusing condensate in steam production
- Reusing wastewater from of the natural gas separation plant’s dehydration process at Gas Separation Plant (GSP) Unit 5 as make up water in the Acid Gas Removal Unit (AGRU) which enables the plant to reduce the volume of makeup water by 17,500 cubic meters per year
In 2018, PTT Group set a goal to use water management with 3Rs Principles to reduce water usage in the operational area by 12.6% and in office buildings by 10% by 2030. At present, PTT Group can reduce water usage from 3Rs activity in the eastern region of the operating area by more than 19 million cubic meters or 17% of the total water demand. In addition, in order to reduce the risk of water shortages in the area and promote benefits for the community, PTT Group aims to reduce water usage to 21 million cubic meters by 2020.
PTT is conducting a feasibility study to manage water resources through the use of an eco-industrial system which involves reusing treated wastewater to manage water usage within the PTT Group
Aside from managing water for companies within PTT Group, PTT set up a public private working committee and a coordination center for water management to integrate sustainable water management and development efforts. The committee consists of representatives from Royal Irrigation Department and industries located in Rayong and Chonburi Provinces which include companies within PTT Group. The committee’s major task is to effectively manage water in these two industrial provinces by considering water needs inclusive of all parties, including the industry and agricultural sectors and the communities. The committee is entrusted to identify potential water resources within and outside the area, and to assure water security in respond to constantly increasing needs of water in the area through various projects as follows:
Predicting water budget trend to support water management in eastern area of Thailand
The PTT Group Water Management Team monitors the water situation and forecasts volume of water budget for a period of six months, 12 months and 20 years. The long-term weather forecasting technology with an integrated hydrology model provides forecasts for the main reservoirs located in Rayong.
Promotion of water footprint assessment throughout product life cycle according to ISO 14046
As of 2018, Water Institute for Sustainability, Federation of Thai Industries, collaborates with Department of Groundwater Resource to launch the Water Foot Print Assessment Project. It aims to enhance tangible implementation of ISO 14046 within Thai Industries. Experts from PTT Water Management Committee also join in to stipulate assessment standards, and to provide technical support to PTT Subsidiaries participating in the project. This was a success, reflected by PTT Global Chemical PLC’s and Global Power Synergy (PLC)’s products both were certified with Water Footprint label for the first time in Thailand. The pilot enables development of water usage database, which will prove to be useful for further efficiency enhancement in production, and for knowledge-sharing with other PTT subsidiaries.
Monitoring program for water scarcity mitigation measures 2018
1. Diverting reserved water from Prasae reservoir to Rayong area
- Prasae water pumping station 1: Prasae reservoir supplies water to Klong Yai reservoir (maximum capacity at 300,000 m3). Since January 2018, 26.40 million m3 have been diverted.
- Prasae water pumping station 2: Prasae reservoir supplies water to Nong Pla Lai reservoir (maximum capacity at 200,000 m3). Since January 2018, 22.18 million m3 have been diverted.
2. Diverting water from Bang Pakong river and private sources to Bang Phra reservoir:
- Diverting higher volume of water than usual from Bang Pakong river and private sources (maximum capacity at 250,000 m3) during March – August. A total of 7.25 million m3 have been diverted.
Infrastructure development program to ensure long-term water security and potential enhancement of eastern water resources:
1. Project to increase Klong Yai Reservoir’s capacity by 10.1 million m3, from the original 40.1 million m3 (in progress)
2. Project to increase Nong Kho Reservoir’s capacity by 2.6 million m3 from the original 21.4 million m3 (in progress)
3. Project to increase Nong Pla Lai Reservoir’s capacity by 23.9 million m3 from the original 163.7 million m3 (in progress)
4. Project to develop 4 water reservoirs in Klong Wang Tanod Basin, Chantaburi, comprises Klong Pragad Reservoir, Klong Pawa Yai Reservoir, Klong Hangmaew Reservoir, Klong Wangtanod Reservoir, with total capacity of 308.30 million m3 (In progress)
5. Project to improve Panthong Irrigation Canal, to take in water from Panthong Irrigation Canal and deliver to Bang Phra Reservoir (in progress)
6. Project to construct Klong Sapan – Prrasae Reservoir water pumping station, with the capacity of 80 million m3 (in progress)