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          “Ban Huai Yang” used to have a lot of Yang, the big perennial plant whose fruit shave is like shuttle with brown color when it is ripe. It can be found in dry evergreen forest. At the present, the local people try to plant Yang trees and take care of them as the identity of the village.

          To build transmission poles across the country, EGAT has executed land eviction from land owners with the compensation in return. According to EGAT Act B.E. 2011, there must not be any activities near the transmission line that will have an impact on stability of electricity system. The eviction might have an impact on the way the local people earn the living, contributing to conflict.

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          EGAT gives an importance on communication to create good relationship with communities and support the communities near the transmission poles to be self-dependent. EGAT supports on what they lack to strengthen the community to have sustainable self-dependence.

          For a project to establish self-depending community network near the transmission poles, EGAT has collaborated with Thammasat University. The pilot project has been done in 3 regions:

          - Southern Thailand, communities near 115 kV transmission line

          - Northern Thailand, communities near 230 kV transmission line

          - North-eastern Thailand, communities near 500 kV transmission line

          Mr. Suthon Boonprasong, Deputy Governor-Transmission, is the project head.

          In the North-eastern Thailand, led by Mr. Anuchit Charoenphan, the Assistant Director of Northeastern Region Operation, there is the coordination between EGAT and Ban Huai Yang Community Network to implement the project with the local people as the center. The community participation is encouraged leading to self-dependence, while relationship in the network and other organizations is established to be a model for developing other communities near transmission line. The connection strategy is used with the concept of “solving one to solving others”: the small problem is solved before bigger problem until stepping up to deal with the problem on security of electricity system as a whole, especially the agricultural activities under the transmission line.

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          The work management focused on establishment of relationship, trust, and community research to know about community life, context, problem, potential, opportunity, and solution. It was found that the problem on the lack of water was first priority. Every year there was a little turbid water in the village, while the cost to produce the water supply was high. 40 years were taken to solve this problem, but there was only temporary solution.

          The community was the owner of this project, thinking and solving the problem carefully. Every sector participated in the management with the concern on those who might get the impact, while everything had to be approved by the community.

          “The community selected natural water diversion from Huai Yang stream to Nong Sang, the big reservoir in the village, by using gravity without building the dam or paying for water pumping. The community will also be able to manage and maintain by itself.”

          The community members offered money and work force, local authority provided water pipes and equipment, and EGAT helped digging and laying the pipes. Every sector has participated with the same goal which is to have enough water in the dry season. There is also the fund management; when there is water left, it will be used for other benefits. Everything is managed by the community members.

          The long duration of preparation and planning contributed to the achievement on May 24, 2014. 6 days were taken to dig the path for pipes with the length of 796 meters which can store 90,000 cubic meters. The community fund was established to systematically take care of the management.

          Moreover, there is the continual activity comprising of growing organic plant, landscape improvement, and Yang planting around Nong Sang.

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          Mr. Thanachat Dhanuwongpaisal, the village headman, revealed that “the problem we faced for a long time was the drought. When EGAT and Thammasat University come to encourage the self-dependence in the community, our life quality is better, especially on the water supply. As we now have sufficient water, we can expand to another project such as organic vegetables.

          We dealt with water problem for 40 years but could only temporarily solve it. Before that we annually paid for 4 tons of alum to filter the very turbid water. Now we need only 2 tons of them and can decrease the cost. Laying the water pipes with gravity concept can also solve the problem. We share the knowledge to the nearby villages such as Ban Koke Soong. We give them the knowledge so that they can adapt it for their community.

          We also support the Yang tree planting, which is the village identity. Tree planting can give us the shadow and water. It will be the heritage for the next generations as well”.

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          The community understands and acknowledges the intention and willingness of EGAT who comes as a friend and supporter. The community leaders said, “EGAT officers are like our children”.

          The community trusts and has good relationship with EGAT, ready to tackle the impact on high voltage transmission line, such as changing the species of trees planted under the transmission lines and being the network helping EGAT to take care of the grid, the national treasure.

          Moreover, the Ban Huai Yang community leader and local people join the network being the lecturer at Ban Nha Ngiew Nha Po, Ban Koke Soong, and Ban Nong Wang Rue in Khonkaen Province.

          Many senior people said, “Water in Nong Sang is never a lot like this before”.

          The sustainably self-dependence supporting project “Ban Huai Yang” can solve the lack of water that had existed for 40 years. Every related sector joins in management and knowledge sharing with love, unity, and community power, contributing to solving other problems in the community.

          Ban Huai Yang was awarded “Winner” from EGAT CSR Day 2015 as it supports sustainable self-dependence with the community context on economy and society. It is valuable project with corporate governance, which is the model in sustainably developing the life quality of community near the EGAT high voltage transmission line.