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A walk to remember

10 lessons learnt by Sasin Chalermlarp on his 388km march to protest against the Mae Wong Dam

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Thirteen days _ 388km. The anti-dam protest march by conservationist Sasin Chalermlarp ended on Sunday in Bangkok to rousing cheers as his long walk has stirred up a debate on the government's plan to build the Mae Wong Dam, one of the 21 dams planned under the 350 billion baht flood management project. 

Starting in Mae Rewa Wildlife Sanctuary in Nakhon Sawan on Sept 10 and ending at Bangkok Art and Culture Centre in Pathumwan on Sunday, the marathon march, says Sasin, was an attempt to make society pay attention to what protesters believe to be environmental dangers of the planned dams _ especially the credibility of the EHIA (Environmental and Health Impact Assessment) report, which they said lacked key information about ecological systems and the possible impact on locals.

Each day while on the march, Sasin, the secretary-general of Seub Nakhasathien Foundation, other conservationists and experts on ecology and water management, held public forums and met with local people, where they all shared information and comments. The march built up momentum in its final stretch, when Sasin entered Bangkok on Saturday and was joined by a few thousand supporters.

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