Mae Mo District

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Mae Mo
Amphoe location in Lampang Province
Amphoe location in Lampang Province
Coordinates: 18°16′30″N 99°39′0″E / 18.27500°N 99.65000°E / 18.27500; 99.65000Coordinates: 18°16′30″N 99°39′0″E / 18.27500°N 99.65000°E / 18.27500; 99.65000
Country Thailand
Province Lampang
Seat Mae Mo
 • Total 959.2 km2 (370.3 sq mi)
Population (2005)
 • Total 38,768
 • Density 40.4/km2 (105/sq mi)
Time zone ICT (UTC+7)
Postal code 52220
Geocode 5202

Mae Mo (Thai: แม่เมาะ; IPA: [mɛ̂ː mɔ́ʔ]) is a district (amphoe) in the eastern part of Lampang Province, northern Thailand.


Neighboring districts are (from the south clockwise): Mae Tha, Mueang Lampang, Chae Hom and Ngao of Lampang Province, Song and Long of Phrae Province.

The Phi Pan Nam Mountains dominate the landscape of the district.


The minor district (king amphoe) was created on 15 April 1976, when three tambons, Ban Dong, Chang Nuea, and Na Sak, were split off from Mueang Lampang district.[1] It was upgraded to a full district on 16 July 1984.[2]


The district is divided into five sub-districts (tambon), which are further subdivided into 37 villages (muban). There are no municipal (thesabans). There are five tambon administrative organizations (TAO).

No. Name Thai name Villages Pop.
1. Ban Dong บ้านดง 8 4,677
2. Na Sak นาสัก 8 6,261
3. Chang Nuea จางเหนือ 6 5,336
4. Mae Mo แม่เมาะ 8 16,589
5. Sop Pat สบป้าด 7 5,905


Mae Mo is the site of a 2,400 MW lignite-fueled power plant run by the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT).[3]The plant has been the target of a series of lawsuits brought by locals who claim that the lignite mining operation and the burning of lignite fuel by EGAT has negatively impacted the environment and the health of those living in the vicinity. A 12-year fight by villagers for compensation for damages ended in victory for the plaintiffs in February 2015. The Supreme Administrative Court in Chiang Mai Province upheld a ruling by the Chiang Mai Administrative Court in 2005. The court handed down a verdict ordering EGAT to pay compensation to 131 plaintiffs, some of them deceased. Plant victims were awarded between 20,000-240,000 baht each, commensurate with their suffering. The total amounts to 25 million baht plus 7.5% interest.[4]

Several days earlier, the court had ordered EGAT to return its Mae Mo golf course, adjacent to the open pit lignite mine, to woodland in order to help clean up the air pollution caused by EGAT's Mae Mo operations.[5]

Coal-fired power plants such as Mae Mo can release up to 150 million tonnes of CO2 over their design life of 20-25 years, according to Greenpeace-Thailand.[6]


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