Dr.Teruo Higa’s
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#56 EM™ as Part of National Policy in Thailand to Deal with Sanitation Issues Resulting from the Flood of 2011

In this series I have often discussed the spread of EM in Thailand, a major EM-using country in the world. About 1,000 tons of EM is produced in Thailand every year, ten times more than in Japan. Most of this EM is used in daily life in farming and agricultural villages, as well as in the environment, in food waste recycling and cleaning bodies of water.

 

EM was first introduced in Thailand in October, 1986, twenty-six years ago this year. In the beginning EM was part of the spread of Nature Farming, and part of the promotion of organic farming led by the Thai royal household. The head of the Sekai Kyusei Kyo Thailand Foundation, the late Rev. Kazuo Wakugami, came to visit me then at the University of the Ryukyus, where I was teaching. He had already confirmed that the application of EM in Nature Farming had achieved excellent results and was hoping to introduce its use in Thailand.
 

He began experiments using EM at a model farm in the Rangsit district of Bangkok, where the heavy clayey soil had prevented good crops from growing. Several months later they started to see surprising results, and by a year later the results were undeniable. Many public organizations, including the Ministry of Agriculture, started to show a favorable attitude toward EM.
 

With his deep sense of conviction, wanting to help Thailand through Nature Farming with EM, soon he had many supporters to spread EM in Thailand, and an ideal EM model farm was created on wasteland that no one thought would ever be productive. That farm is now the Saraburi Nature Farming Training Center, where people, confident in the power of EM, receive training to actively apply EM in agriculture and environment.
 

More than 100,000 people have been trained at the Saraburi Center. The Center accepts trainees from all over, mainly from Asia, and has trained several thousand non-Thai people in the use of EM. The Center has been instrumental in the spread of EM throughout Asia and to this day, as a cutting edge model farm for Nature Farming, accepts numerous trainees. The Center has a vital role in training the Nature Farming leaders of countries throughout Asia.
 

This model case has led to the spread of EM throughout Thailand. Starting with this model farm created by the late Rev. Wakugami's spirit of volunteerism, the Royal Thai Army and the King's Project have used EM to aid poor farming families, and the Ministry of Social Development and Human Security, principally the National Housing Authority, has used EM in the environment and daily life. In this way, they are actively spreading the use of EM throughout Thailand.
 

All schools in rural districts of Thailand have their own small farms and teach their students about agriculture, and approximately 10,000 of these schools are now using EM in their curriculum. Some schools sell their EM-raised, pesticide free vegetables in markets, and in some districts this has become an important source of revenue for the schools. EM became so well known that virtually everyone in farm villages knew about it, but since in Bangkok and other urban areas fewer people had the opportunity to use EM, the Ministry of Social Development and Human Security began using EM as part of sanitation measures in slum districts, but this was just at the level of food waste recycling and cleaning water, etc. For its part, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, too, was not that enthusiastic about EM at this point.
 

Still, as I have introduced in this series, there were many prominent uses of EM: the National Housing Authority used it to clean the water in a 300 milli on ton dam, the Royal Thai Army has used it in their fight against drugs, and it has been used in the campaign against Islamic terrorists in the southern part of Thailand, all activities that the UN has applauded. In a word, the use of EM makes for more abundant farming, which helps farmers rise up out of poverty. Because of this, the Royal Thai Army and the Ministry of Social Development and Human Security have created their own EM training centers where they train over 5,000 people per year. Overall, the number of people receiving training in Thailand has topped 1 million.
 

The Entire Nation Using EM

Through the above background, and because of EM's achievements and use in governmental projects, it was used in solving sanitation issues that arose during the once-in-a-century flood that occurred in Thailand. As often happens, some university professors and so-called environmental specialists raised baseless objections to EM, questioning whether it was harming the environment, and several foreign media outlets contacted me for a comment.
 

EM is not only safe, but it's well known now that it improves the ecology. At the 2010 COP10 meeting it was lauded as a technology that helps maintain biodiversity. In the beginning, the mass media widely reported the opinions of these experts, but the actual results of EM in the field were so overwhelmingly obvious that these opposing voices soon disappeared.
 

As the flood in Thailand worsened in early October, the Thai government requested the EM Research Organization to supply them with EM. The EM factory near Ayutthaya was submerged just as it was going to ship EM, so it was unable to supply enough EM. The Thai government mobilized the military to deal with the flooding, and the Royal Thai Army was kind enough to let us use warehouses in safe areas so we could produce enough EM. We were able to again, operating at full capacity, produce enough EM to respond to the massive flood.
 

In November, the Royal Thai Army, the Ministry of Social Development and Human Secuirty, and the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment held a kickoff campaign ceremony for the use of EM as a sanitation countermeasure, and on November 3, with Prime Minister Yingluck helping toss EM Mudballs into the water, the movement to use EM to clean bodies of water formally got underway.


Photo 1 shows this kickoff ceremony.


In Photo 2, Prime Minister Yingluck is shown throwing in EM Mudballs.






Photo 3 shows the Royal Thai Army and others spraying EM and making EM Mudballs.



Each military post created its own pamphlet calling for the residents cooperation; here are two representative pamphlets, one produced by the Royal Thai Army (the one depicting a man in a military uniform) and one made by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment depicting a Superman type figure. They're written in Thai, but if you look carefully you can see the word EM in the text.
 

Besides the Thai government, many other organizations, while pursuing their own individual EM activities, worked in tandem in this movement to use EM; these included the Thai Federation of Economic Organizations, the Thai Buddhist Association, the Welfare Council, and many other organizations. The majority of Japanese corporations with operations in Thailand, too, used EM in cleanup and sanitary management.
 

At first it was predicted that after the floods there would be terrible problems with sanitation and contagious disease spreading, but these worst case scenarios did not occur and Thailand is fully confident now, having overcome this national catastrophe using EM. The world is starting to recognize that EM is essential, not just in the response to the Great East Japan Earthquake, but in dealing with many types of natural disasters. It is critical is to reaffirm the importance of an EM lifestyle that uses EM as freely as the air and water.

Courtesy of Ecopure

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