Bangkok Declaration on the ASEAN Environment

Bangkok, 29 November 1984

The Government of Brunei Darussalam,
The Government of the Republic ofIndonesia,
The Government of Malaysia,
The Government of the Republic of the Philippines,
The Government of the Republic of Singapore and
The Government of the Kingdom of Thailand,
Member States of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN)

CONCERNED with the problem of environ- mental degradation of the region resulting from the stresses of accelerated population growth and development

HAVING RECALLED the First ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on the Environment and the Meetings of the ASEAN Experts Group on the Environment which recognized the need for cooperation amongst ASEAN countries in order to safeguard the ASEAN Environment and in particular its natural resources;

MINDFUL of the Manila Declaration on the ASEAN Environment signed in Manila, Philippines, on 30 April 1981, which provides that Member Countries shall cooperate in the progressive implementation of projects under the ASEAN Environment Programme (ASEP);

NOTING with satisfaction the progress of the implementation of the projects under the ASEAN Environment Programme (ASEP);

FURTHER NOTING that the ASEAN countries, during the past decade, have accomplished the establishment of national environmental protection agencies, and that these agencies have now accomplished the important step in defining their missions, in gaining an understanding of how environment protection can feasibly be accomplished within the context of the socio-cultural and patterns -,f the in initiating programmes aimed at implementing feasible protection measures, and in developing national capabilities in environmental technology;

CONCERNED wit the need to take full advantage of this good beginning to continue the progress over the next decade on national policies in the planning and implementation of development projects;

CONSIDERING that the task of integrating environmental protection concepts into national development planning represents one of the most complex tasks ever faced by governments of the region;

RECOGNIZING the experience and confidence gained in managing the environment during this initial period both in their own countries and through ASEAN cooperation;

DO HEREBY DECLARE their desire to strengthen and enhance their regional cooperation. In the field of environmental protection to meet the increasing and challenging environmental problems of the ASEAN region in the decade ahead, and to this end hereby adopt the following objective and policy guidelines;


To implement the ASEAN DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY through an integrated approach entailing advance or forward planning in the environmentally related activities with a view to incorporating environmental dimension. in development planning right at the base level in order to achieve sustained development and long-term conservation of environmental assets and at the same time improving the quality of life for all.


To achieve the objective noted above, the following policy guidelines shall be adopted for application throughout the ASEAN region:

(1) With respect to environmental management:

(i) Foster the development of macro economic environmental development plans which can be accommodated by the environmental carrying capacity of the region.

(ii) Continue and strengthen the use of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) process and extended Cost- Benefit Analysis for minimizing the adverse effects and for ensuring proper consideration of environ- mental values in all projects and programmes under government that are likely to produce significant environmental impact and its gradual extension to the private sector including industry.

(iii) Develop a system of procedures for conducting ElAs and for their review which can be practically utilized within the ASEAN region.

(iv) Continue and increase efforts for establishing environmental units in the planning divisions of major project implementing agencies to ensure that environmental consciousness permeates government departments that development policy and planning in all sectors reflect systematic consideration of the environment.

(v) Establish techniques for quantify- ing the impact of development projects on environment both favourable and unfavourable.

(vi) Evolve criteria for augmentation of renewable resources and economic- al use of non-renewable resources.

(vii) Prepare an optimal land use pattern and zoning plan.

(2) With respect to nature conservation:

Develop new and practicable approaches for preserving forests wildlife, and other ecological systems in the face of continuing population pressure.

(3) With respect to marine environment:

Develop practicable methods for the management of pollution discharges so that economic development of coastal resources may proceed in coexistence with preservation of the quality of coastal beaches and resorts and the marine environment.

(4) With respect to industry:

(i) Adopt practicable methods for ensuring reasonable control of waste discharges from the earliest stages of project formulation.

(ii) Wherever practicable adopt low waste and non-waste technology and more effective re-use and recycling of wastes in production.

(iii) Develop a Toxic and Hazardous Waste Control Programme and stimulate efforts by government agencies and industry to develop suitable systems for control.

(5) With respect to urban environment: increase efforts to provide water-borne sewerage .systems with central sewage treatment facilities at least for the major towns.

(6) With respect to environmental educa- tion and training:

(i) Continue efforts to enhance public awareness in respect of the impor- tance of environmental protection and support governmental actions in this regard.

ii) Provide environmental training of personnel involved in decision- making on projects, programmes, policies and plans with emphasis on cause and effect relationship that exist between an individual’s

(iii) Introduce stronger general envi- ronmental theme into school and university syllabi.

(iv) Provide technical training for staff engaged directly in the work of environmental protection agencies and in environmental programmes of other agencies.

(7) With respect to environmental information systems:

(i) Develop a comprehensive environmental system to facilitate decision-making;

(ii) Initiate or strengthen efforts for establishment of suitable national data bank/storage and retrieval system;

(iii) Intensify efforts for establishing monitoring programmes for continuing surveillance of sensitive environmental resources; and

(iv) Promote increased use of remote sensing as a means of establishing environmental data bases.

(8) With respect to wider involvement in environmental management Encourage and promote cooperation between Governments, Non-Governmental Organizations, Universities, Business Communities within ASEAN in the field of environmental management.

(9) With respect to environmental legisla- tion: Develop appropriate legislation to support the proper management and development of the environment.

(10) With respect to international coopera- tion on environmental management in the ASEAN countries:

Establish cooperation with developed and other developing countries and international agencies for transfer of technology and share experiences in the management of the environ- ment.


DECIDE to adopt and implement the revised ASEAN Environment Programme II (ASEP II).

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the undersigned, being duly authorized thereto by their respective Governments, have signed this Bangkok Declara- tion.

DONE in Bangkok, Thailand, this Twenty- Ninth Day of November in the year One Thousand Nine Hundred and Eighty-Four.