ENLAWTHAI Foundation (EnLAW), formerly “Environmental Litigation and Advocacy for the Wants”, has been founded as a result of consensus reached among NGOs working on the environment, energy, human rights and development. They all agreed that intense industrialization since the First National Economic and Social Development Plan has engendered industrial pollution causing extensive impact on people’s livelihood and the environment, directly and indirectly.
In addition, the implementation of many projects has taken place without public participation event though several of the projects have led to blatant infringement of people’s and community’s rights. Meanwhile, existing laws for natural resource and environmental management in Thailand have failed to cope with the residue of development. The legal problem is twofold including a lack of enforcement and the laws themselves are stagnant and have not been changed to cope with the evolving situation and the ever more complex and chronicle environmental problems. Thailand still needs a think tank to help to propose the recommendations to deal with the flaws in the existing environmental laws and justice process.
The group of NGOs agreed that an environmental law organization should be set up to provide legal aid to them in their activism and to identify the flaws in the legal system and propose solutions. The Environmental Litigation and Advocacy for the Wants or EnLAW was thus founded in 2001 with a mission to monitor and enhance enforcement of positive laws and to advocate change of the existing law to provide better protection for individuals and communities in their exercising their legal environmental rights in accordance to principles regarding social and sustainable development. Later, EnLAW was registered as “ENLAWTHAI Foundation (EnLAW)”, a legal entity under the Thai law in 2013 with the same spirit and missions.
- To promote the exercise of rights and liberties in protecting and preserving environmental quality, natural resources and health of individuals and community as provided for by international laws, the Constitution and other relevant instruments.
- To offer legal assistance to people and community affected or to be affected by problems related to pollution, natural resources, the environment and health
- To promote well-being of people and to preserve, protect, conserve and enhance the environment and natural resources through various activities
- To propose policy or laws on the environment, natural resources and health
- To assist agencies, private and government, which embark on an effort to protect, preserve and enhance the environment and natural resources
- To promote and provide environmental education at high school and undergraduate levels
- To study laws and the enforcement of laws concerning natural resources, the environment and health
- To promote learning process, training and to disseminate knowledge concerning rights and liberties to protect natural resources, the environment and health
- To collaborate with other not-for-profit organizations and public organizations to carry out activities for public interest.
- To be an independent and non-partisan, non-governmental organization which shall not work to serve the interest of any political parties or to be used as a tool to grasp power by them and to not carry out any activities directly involved with politics