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Topic Summary

Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 14, 2017, 05:14:51 PM »

Northeast working to cope with drought

Work has begun in provinces of the northeast to ensure adequate water supply during the drought season.

In Khon Kaen province, farmers in Muang district have sectioned off parts of their farms for use as reservoirs despite the high cost of such a practice, saying that the water will be needed after the past 3 years saw severe drought conditions. They noted that some farmers have already begun planting a new crop for this season despite government warnings against doing so.

In Uthai Thani province, military personnel have taken part in dredging canals in Baan Rai district in assistance of Karen villagers. The dredged waterways will be able to take on more water and help to replenish local reservoirs. Earlier, the army dispatched water trucks to provide drinking and usage water to locals of Baan Rai, urging them to ration the water for future use.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: February 14, 2017, 07:06:36 PM »

Water resources expert advises farmers to brace for drought

The Director of the Hydro and Agro Informatics Institute under the Ministry of Science and Technology has asked people to be cautious of the impending drought and prepare water for usage during the dry season.

Hydro and Agro Informatics Institute Director Royol Chitdon compared the weather in 2017 to the weather in 1999, with the southern and northern regions experiencing significant rainfall during January to February. The accumulated volume of rainfall during this period is recorded at 1,464 millimeters.

Although Chao Phraya Dam currently holds twice as much water than it did last year, the general public should remain vigilant and use water with care. The country has continued to face recurring drought crises for 2-3 consecutive years, he said. Farmers in particular have been asked to prepare an appropriate water management plan for daily usage and for agriculture.

He went on to say that the amount of usable water at other dams remains far from abundance, so farmers should choose to cultivate crops with a short harvest cycle, instead of opting for off-season rice.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: August 25, 2016, 11:49:53 AM »

More water in dams this year than last year’s

 There is more water in dams across the country this year than last year and the water will be enough for consumption and for farming to last through the next dry season, Irrigation Department director-general Suthep Noypairote assured on Tuesday.

However, he admitted that the amount of water stored in 20 dams such as Mae Ngad, Mae Kwang, Nam Pung, Chulabhorn, Lampao, Ubonrat, Lam Takong, Lam Phra Ploeng, Pasak Cholasit, Tap Salao, Bang Phra, Nong Pla Lai and Pran Buri was still not much although it was better than last year’s.

Dienmu tropical storm last week caused flooding in parts of Nan province and increased water level in Sirikit dam and Chao Phraya river basin. Sirikit dam now is estimated to store 2,390 million cubic metres of water, representing 36 percent of its full capacity while Bhumibol dam is getting 18 million cubic metres of water a day and is expected to store up to nine billion cubic metres of water by the end of the rainy season.

The main dams now store 3,696 million cubic metres of water which should be enough to meet the needs for consumption and to maintain the ecological balance.
Posted by: thaiga
« on: May 30, 2016, 05:27:08 PM »

Drought lingers in many northeastern provinces

 The provincial irrigation department in Buriram province advises the local farmers to postpone their rice cultivation for one more month due to low levels of water in reservoirs. In Kamphaeng Phet, farmers’ water sources are still dried up, damaging many crops.

Drought has continued to affect Mueang district in Kamphaeng Phet. The local farmers are worried that all of their produce will be damaged if the situation does not improve.

In Buriram, farmers inside and outside of irrigation areas in the province are warned that their rice may be damaged if they plant it during this period. The provincial irrigation department suggests that they should not plant rice until mid-June despite some rainstorms in the province. No water has not yet flown into all 16 reservoirs in Buriram.

In Surin, certificates have been given to the farmers who participated in a training course to increase agricultural production. They learned how to adjust their cultivation to suit the weather and market demands.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: May 21, 2016, 04:03:04 PM »

Korat reservoir levels still low after storm

Water levels at Lam Takhong and four other reservoirs in Nakhon Ratchasima remain at only around 20% of their capacity despite heavy rain from a summer thunderstorm. (Photo by Prasit Tangprasert)

Water levels in five major reservoirs in this northeastern province remain low despite heavy rains from a summer thunderstorm that pounded several areas.

The five reservoirs — Lam Takhong, Lam Phra Ploeng, Mun Bon, Lam Sae and Lam Plaima — were now filled to only 20% of their total holding capacity, Chidchanok Somprasert, director of the Irrigation Office Zone 8, said on Saturday.

Lam Takhong in Si Khiu district contained 51 million cubic metres, or 16.2% of its holding capacity of 314.5 million. Lam Phra Ploeng in Pak Thong Chai holds 22.9 milllion cu m (21.2%); Mun Bon in Khon Buri district has 25.9 million cu m (19.4%) and Lam Sae in the same district has 44.1 million cu m (16.5%). Water in the Lam Plaimat reservoir in Soeng Sang district totals 34.9 million cu m, or 39.4% of its holding capacity.

The water stored in the reservoirs was lower than expected for this time of year and given recent weather events, said Mr Chidchanok.

Over the past two weeks, summer storms have lashed the province, causing heavy downpours in several areas. However, the storms did not bring up the water levels in the reservoirs as the heaviest rain took place in areas behind the reservoirs.

Irrigation officials plan to meet with representatives of other agencies in mid-June to work out a detailed water management plan, said Mr Chidchanok.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: May 17, 2016, 04:11:56 PM »

Water reservoirs in Surin still at critical levels despite recent rainfall

Despite the recent downpours, two of the 18 reservoirs in Surin province remain at critical levels.

Director of Surin’s Irrigation Office Jetsada Boonsuya revealed that the province’s 18 reservoirs currently hold a total of 57 million cubic meters, or 40% of their combined capacity. Despite recent rainfall, the reservoirs of Huay Kaew and Koh Kaew are still under 10% capacity.

Mr Jetsada therefore urged residents to continue to conserve water. The province has also urged farmers to delay cultivation by another month to avoid damages that may occur.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: May 14, 2016, 01:53:13 PM »

21 percent of water are left in five dams in Korat

 There are only 21 percent of water left in five dams in Nakhon Ratchasima which are below forecast, said Mr Chidchanok Somprasert, director of the 8th Irrigation Office.

He noted that water in the five dams namely Lam Takong, Lam Phra Ploeng, Moon Bon, Lam Sae and Lam Plaimat had been receding steadily to the extent that only 21 percent of water are left in the dams.

The amount of water in the five dams is as follows: 52.9 million cubic metres in Lam Takong against full capacity of 314.4 million cubic metres; 30.1 million cubic metres in Lam Phra Ploeng against full capacity of 109 million cubic metres; 27 million cubic metres in Moon Bon against full capacity of 141 million cubic metres; 44.7 million cubic metres in Lam Sae against full capacity of 275 million cubic metres; and 34.8 million cubic metres in Lam Plaimat against full capacity of 96 million cubic metres.

Mr Chidchanok pointed out that the remaining water in the dams was below anticipation and the recent rains have not helped much in replenishing the dams. But he is confident that the remaining water will be enough to meet consumption demand until the arrival of the rainy season.

The director is optimistic that the water condition in all five dams will definitely improve in July when more rains are expected.
Posted by: thaiga
« on: May 12, 2016, 12:52:37 PM »

Drought has take toll on Kwan Phayao and its fish stocks

 Kwan Phayao, the biggest fresh-water lake in the North, is fast drying up with many fish getting killed due to the extreme hot weather.

Mr Vivat Prarom, director of the fishery research and development centre in Kwan Phayao, said that the water in the lake, reputed to be the 4th biggest of the country, has substantially depleted exposing some of the lake bottom which eventually cracked.

He noted that many fish species did not spawn due to the receding water and hot weather resulting to a sharp drop of fish population in the lake.

Nevertheless, he disclosed that the centre had bred about 50 million fish fries which will be released into the lake once the lack is replenished with rain waters.

Kwan Phayao lake covers an area of about 12,000 rai.

Meanwhile, Mr Somboon Buathet, president of the fishery group of Ban San Nong Niew, said that the depletion of fish stocks in the lake had deprived many households around the lake of revenues from fishing.

Shortage of water has also made it impossible for farming too, he added.
Posted by: thaiga
« on: May 09, 2016, 01:55:27 PM »

Dept of Water Resources speeding up help in drought-disaster zone

The Department of Water Resources is speeding up assistance for residents in drought-hit Phayuhakhiri district, Nakhon Sawan province.

The Department of Water Resources has installed two 12-inch water pumping machines on the bank of Chao Phraya River. Through a newly-constructed 1-kilometer pipeline, water in the river will be transported to 300 homes in Phayuhakhiri district to alleviate the drought crisis which has dragged on for several months. The department has also warned the residents against using water for agriculture as the area could risk running out of water for consumption.

Meanwhile in Nakhon Ratchasima province, the amount of water in Lam Takhong Dam on Saturday was reported to be 54.65 million cubic meters or only 17 percent of the dam’s capacity, prompting the officials to reduce the quantity of water released from the dam to 3 cubic meters per second. Officials have confirmed that the remaining amount of water in the dam will last until the rainy season arrives while urging everyone to use water in the most efficient way possible.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: May 05, 2016, 12:03:23 AM »

Farmers told to depend on rains for rice farming this year

 Farmers in the Chao Phraya river basin were told to rely on rains as the source of water for the cultivation of their main crops because there is no water for farming from the four main dams.

The Royal Irrigation Department reported that there are only 8 percent of usable water left in the Sirikit, Bhumibol, Kwae Noi Bamrungdaen and Pasak Chonlasit which will be used mainly for consumption and conservation of ecology until July.

Meanwhile, the Meteorological Department anticipated that the rainy season would start in the third week of May. However, rains might stop in June until July but the Royal Irrigation Department has taken steps to try to supply water for rice farming but to a certain extent only due to water shortage in the main dams.

The Royal Irrigation Department needs to store more water in the dams to cope with the arrival of dry season at the end of the year.
Posted by: thaiga
« on: May 04, 2016, 11:37:35 AM »

No respite from heat; rains may be delayed

Meteorologists warn of higher temperatures; air too arid and will stop formation of rain bearing clouds
THAILAND will continue to suffer scorching temperatures this month and the rainy season may be further delayed due to the lack of moisture in the air, meteorologists have warned.

Wattana Kanbua, senior meteorologist and Marine Meteorological Centre director, revealed yesterday that Thailand may start getting some rain from May 14 onwards, as the moisture-bearing southwestern wind from the Indian Ocean will blow into Thailand. However, due to the hot weather in most parts of the country, it may not rain as expected.

"Judging from the weather-pattern stimulator, we can see that Thailand will get more rain after mid-May, but I'm concerned that the weather in Thailand will still be too hot and dry for clouds to form and create rain," Wattana said.

"The situation will be like last year when the winds came on time, but the weather was too hot and arid for rain to form. That is why we need more trees to trap the moisture and keep the weather cool," he said.

As it was still unclear when the rainy season will come, many areas in the country are suffering badly from drought and hot weather.

full article: The Nation
Posted by: thaiga
« on: May 02, 2016, 12:37:55 PM »

PM introduces 15-year anti-drought plan

 Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha said today the government has formulated a 15-year drought prevention plan with a focus on providing ample drinking water.

In his national televised speech on “Returning Happiness to the People”, the prime minister highlighted the government’s anti-drought measures to be implemented over a span of 15 years.

These measures include 12 water management related activities to be launched in different phases of the plan such as a groundwater project, a water resources development campaign, irrigation systems in rural areas, and reservoir construction.

The plan seeks to tackle drought in a sustainable manner while making sure that there is a sufficient amount of water for consumption along the way.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: April 30, 2016, 03:12:09 PM »

Rainy season to come in mid May, weather deputy chief says

 It's a good news now when the Meteorological Department says the current drought that has plagued many parts of the country and put it as the worst in 20 years will be over mid next month as the seasonal monsoon rains will start to come.

The good news was revealed by the department’s deputy director-general Mr Songkran Aksorn at the meeting of a committee  responsible for solving the drought crisis.

The meeting was presided over by the Agriculture and Cooperatives Minister Gen Chatchai Sarikalya.

Mr Songkran said that rains will start to come to relieve the crisis from the middle of next month onwards in the Central Region and in the Northeast.

Then in July, rain will begin in the North and scatter all over the country.

More rain is forecast this year and two more tropical storms are expected to bring humidity to the country from August to September, he assured the meeting.

But at the meeting, the Irrigation Department reported  that the water situation in the Central Plain along the Chao Phraya river  remains concern.

It said only 1.35 billion cubic meters of water are  left usable for irrigation areas.

It  advises farmers to start planting crops in July.
Posted by: thaiga
« on: April 22, 2016, 12:03:21 PM »

More than 1 billion liters of water distributed to drought stricken zones

More than 1billion liters of water have been distributed to local residents nationwide as drought crisis continues to ravage many parts of the country.

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha said during the National Water Resources Committee meeting that the dry season arrived sooner this year. He urged everyone to conserve water until the situation improves.

The Prime Minister, however, expects the country to have more water next year. A total of 27 provinces have already been declared drought stricken zones.

It is said that the extent of damage caused by water shortages this year is less than that in 2014 and 2015. Around 59 million liters of water have been delivered to sustain home consumption in drought hit provinces by the military units and approximately 1.4 billion liters more by the government.

By the end of September, Thailand will see as many as 9,000 ground water wells constructed to ensure sufficient water supplies throughout the summer.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: April 17, 2016, 02:40:46 PM »

Ubolratana Dam at critical level

Once-floating restaurants near the Ubolratana Dam in Khon Kaen province put up makeshift walkways to continue serving customers on March 26 after the water level in the reservoir fell to less than 1%. (Photo by Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)

Water levels at major dams continue to fall, with one major Khon Kaen dam now at a 23-year low, but authorities say successful rainmaking has helped improve conditions.

The Ubolratana Dam in the northeastern province is running dry with no storage water left, forcing authorities to draw 20 million of the 500 million cubic metres of thicker bottom water to date, according to Royol Jitdon, director of the Hydro and Agro Informatics Institute.

"Bottom water is generally kept to stabilise a dam but at the Ubolratana Dam there is no choice. We estimate 180 million cu m of the bottom water there will be drawn until July, the start of the rainy season," he said.

In 1993, authorities had to use 200 million of bottom water from the reservoir, he added.

The reservoirs at the four major dams on the Chao Phraya River have a combined 2.09 billion cu m at present. From Nov 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016, 3.5 billion cu m will have to be released for consumption and ecological balance. To date, 2.8 billion cu m have been discharged.

full article Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: April 13, 2016, 11:36:43 AM »

No water for Songkran in Chaiyaphum

The section of the Chi River sits dry near a tap water plant in Muang district of Chaiyaphum province on Wednesday. (Photo by Makhawan Wannakul)

People in parts of Chaiyaphum have no water to celebrate the Songkran water festival.

Winai Saengsupawat, chief of the Chaiyaphum provincial waterworks authority, announced Wednesday morning that due to drought, tap water would be weak or not flow at all in the Muang and Ban Khwao districts of this northeastern province from April 13-17, the Songkran holidays.

Affected areas consisted of Ban Khai, Ban Phue, Bung Khla, Khok Sung, Non Samran, Nong Phai, Pone Thong, and Rob Muang areas of Muang Chaiyaphum district; and Non Daeng and Talad Raeng areas of Ban Khwao district.

Actually tap water already had been stopped for a week in Ban Phue area. Drought was the severest there in decades.

Chaiyaphum governor Chusak Trisan deployed water trucks to help affected people.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: April 12, 2016, 12:27:25 PM »

Drought continues to ravage in several provinces

 Military officials and related government agencies have been distributing water to drought affected areas, as harsh weather conditions continue affecting the country.

Severe drought sparked wildfires on a plain in Nakhon Ratchasima's Phimai district before spreading to nearby coconut plantations, destroying more than 40 rai of farmland and about 300 coconut trees. It took firefighters about 40 minutes to extinguish the blaze.

Meanwhile in Phang Nga, the province administration and related units dispatched officials to lay pipelines connecting raw water pumping stations in Thai Mueang district to a pond in the residential area.

The move was necessary to produce fresh water after sea water mixed with the station's water sources, disrupting supplies to an area of 2,000 households.

Mobile Development Unit One-Five in Uthai Thani province dispatched officials to produce fresh water for residents in Ban Rai district.

They also deployed water trucks to distribute water supplies to local residents affected by the ongoing drought.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: April 11, 2016, 11:57:36 AM »

Sirikit dam refuses extra water for Songkran

Water discharge from the Sirikit dam in Uttaradit province will not be increased during Songkran holiday as the reservoir level is at its lowest since the dam began operating 40 years ago, director Suthep Lertsrimongkhon said Sunday.

Mr Suthep said the dam had 1.1 billion cubic metres of usable water, or 16% of capacity, compared with 5 billion cu/m this time last year. It was discharging 10 million cubic metres each day for consumption, tap water production, maintaining aquatic ecosystems and pushing back salt water, under the Royal Irrigation Department requirements.

With this daily discharge rate, he said the available water volume was sufficient for the next 100 days. If there was insufficient rain to refill the dam during this period the water shortage situation would escalate into a crisis.

full article: Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: April 10, 2016, 12:13:47 PM »

Water office warns drought is spreading

more than half non-irrigated land said to be affected

More than half of the country outside of irrigation zones is close to a drought crisis, according to the Royal Irrigation Department.

The drought has left a water retrenchment pond depleted in Wiset Chai Chan district, Ang Thong. Farmers are counting on this week's forecast rain.

The crisis is looming large for non-irrigated areas in 152 districts of 42 provinces, Thongplew Kongchan, the department's deputy chief, conceded.

Areas outside the irrigation zones rely principally on water from natural sources, many of which are fast receding.

Speaking at a seminar on the drought organised by the Isra News Institute on Saturday, he said drought was also threatening energy security.

The Ubolratana Dam in Khon Kaen is running so low on water that it could mar its ability to generate electricity for provinces in the Northeast.

Mr Thongplew explained that if the dam continues to discharge more water, it might have to lower its power production.

However, the RID deputy chief said the government has prioritised the use of water, which is supplied first to farmlands that grow crops from the previous season.

Farmers have been asked to suspend rice planting if their land is not served by irrigated water and encouraged to switch to drought-resistant crops.

Some rice farms can survive better than others because they have underground water sources available, he said.

Mr Thongplew said the management of water for farmland had so far not encountered any major problems. There is no need to delay the first rice growing season, due to start next month, he said. He gave assurances that there is enough water for irrigation until July, which marks the onset of the rainy season.

There are 33 large-scale reservoirs and dams nationwide, and 448 medium-sized reservoirs, each capable of holding less than 100 million cubic metres of water. The rest are small-scale reservoirs mostly supervised by local administration organisations.

Water currently held in irrigated zones amounts to 22% of the country's total water supply.

In the Chao Phraya river basin, with four large dams covering 22 provinces, water in the dams this year is at about 12%, or two billion cubic metres less than last year.

Rawee Rungrueng, president of the Thai Farmers Network, said the government's policy on crop substitution during the drought has been problematic in practice because it was rushed and lacked the input of farmers.

Also, decision-making power was centralised, which slowed budget disbursements.

He said the policy should have been planned and executed well in advance.

Jakkarat Lertopas, deputy governor of the Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand, said the use of water by industrial estates would not cause any disruption to supplies.

The estates were now recycling their water and exploring underground sources.

Niphon Puapongsakorn, of the Thailand Development Research Institute, urged the government to map out a long-term management plan rather than try to tackle problems every year.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: April 07, 2016, 02:07:11 PM »

Artesian well provides drought lifeline in Surin

Villagers arrive with containers to fetch water from the artesian well at Ban Nakha in tambon Tatum of Surin's Sangkha district. (Photos by Nopparat Kingkaew)

In the face of persistent heat and drought, an artesian well has become the main source of relief for a border village in Sangkha district, providing a year-round non-stop flow of natural underground water.

This artesian well is located near Ban Khana, a village on the border with Cambodia, in tambon Tatum of Sangkha district.

The ensure the best use of this natural source of water, the Tatum tambon administration organisation (TAO) has built a cement wellhead over it, with PVC pipes and taps to control the outflow.

A bowl-shape concrete and stone structure has been built around the well, with a staircase so people can easily access the water. It is free of charge to local people, who depend on it for household use.

Not only the nearby village benefits, traders from faraway villages also arrive in pickups and trucks loaded with various kinds of containers. Everyday, they can be seen waiting in a long queue for their turn to get water.

The Tatun TAO charges them 10 baht for 200 litres of water, 50 baht for 1,000 litres and 80 baht for 1,500 litres.

Chai Saenkom, 50,  from nearby Kalengwek village, said he sells each 1,000 litres of water he gets from the well for 300-350 baht, depending on the travel distance. Each day, he can make four trips at most, as the water is now flowing out slowly with many people waiting for it in a long queue.

Somchai Kaewsawang, the head of Ban Khana, said villagers believe the water from the well has a beneficial mineral content.

The well is managed by a village committee.  Seventy percent of the money from sale of the water is set aside as a community development fund, 20% for the people who collect the payments, and 10% for the committee.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: April 03, 2016, 01:34:31 PM »

Parched fields force Thailand to look beyond rice

Thailand has long served as one of the globe's main rice bowls, but chronic water shortages are pushing the country to move away from a grain that dominates its fields and has defined a way of life for generations.

Laddawan Kamsong has spent the past 40 years coaxing rice from her plot in central Thailand, but she is tired of watching her farmland squeezed dry by increasingly severe droughts.

"I plan to replace some rice paddies with limes," she told AFP after attending a government-run workshop urging farmers to diversify their crops.

Thailand is one of the world's top rice exporters.

But four consecutive years of below-average rainfall have drained water reserves and strangled production, pushing many farmers into debt.

more here: Bangkokpost
Posted by: Aussie
« on: April 01, 2016, 06:50:18 PM »

I wonder if the Thai Government, in light of the current drought situation, has considered excavating earth from existing dams in areas where the dam has become dry?
One D-9 Caterpillar Dozer can move approximately 400 cubic metres of earth per hour.  By adding depth to existing dams,  that in 1 ten hour day 4000 cubic metres of water capacity could be added to the dam or 4 million litres. Multiply the existing number of dozers and an enormous quantity of water can be added at a significantly reduced cost.
Posted by: thaiga
« on: April 01, 2016, 04:38:20 PM »

PEA releases caravan of water tanks

The Provincial Electricity Authority (PEA) has sent out a caravan of water tanks to drought-hit provinces in the Northeast today.

The launch of the drought-relief caravan took place at the Provincial Electricity Authority Area 3 in Nakhon Ratchasima Province. Chairman of the PEA Executive Board of Directors, Tawin Pliansri presided over the release of water trucks.

Mr. Tawin said other than the electricity supply, the PEA did attach great importance to social and environmental responsibility. The water aid program will be carried out in 15 drought-hit provinces.

The PEA has planned to install 2,000 –liter water tanks in accessible areas in the drought-hit zones to facilitate affected residents. As for today, the water aid caravan is to carry out its mission in three districts in Nakhon Ratchasima and Buriram.

Posted by: Johnnie F.
« on: April 01, 2016, 03:22:58 PM »

Khon Kaen province started pumping "dead storage" water from Ubolratana dam on Friday as Phu Hin Rong Kla National Park in Phitsanulok province closed its bungalows to visitors, because of the severity of the drought.

Khon Kaen irrigation authorities on Friday began using the 5-million-cubic-metres of dead storage in the Ubolratana reservoir to maintain water supplies for local industries and public consumption.


Dead storage is the water in the reservoir below the lowest outlet.

More at: Bangkok Post
Posted by: thaiga
« on: April 01, 2016, 01:57:57 PM »

Drought killing next year's sugar crop

Exports down 20%, farmer debts pile up

A sugar cane worker poses while working in a field at tambon Pakchong in Ratchaburi province March 22. (Reuters photo)

Prasert Jitkham stoops down and pulls a yellowed sugar cane shoot from baked soil. The worst drought in more than 20 years `has killed the plant he should harvest next year.

The El Nino weather phenomenon has played havoc with crops across Southeast Asia and beyond. Thailand, the world's second-largest sugar exporter, will ship 20% less of the sweetener to international markets this year than last, and farmers fear the damage already inflicted on young cane plants could make next year worse.

A drop in exports from Thailand and India has contributed to forecasts for a widening global supply deficit this year, fuelling a rally in international prices to a 17-month peak last week and helping sugar outperform a commodity complex struggling with the slump in global oil prices.

"It's dead," Mr Prasert said, pulling the dusty shoot apart. "Worms have eaten up all its roots. They're all starting to die. This is the worst I've seen it since I started growing sugar cane in 1979."

International prices may have rallied but farmers are reaping no benefits. Mr Prasert and other sugar farmers in this central province say they have lost 20%-30% of their output this year due to the drought.

Dry conditions make cane less sweet, so mills need more to produce the same amount of sugar. That means they pay farmers less per tonne.

As the drought takes its toll on the young cane, farmers, sugar mills and the government have soured on their outlook for next year's crop.

"Farmers can't grow cane," said Boonthin Kotsiri, production director at the Office of Cane and Sugar Board. "There's no water."

Some farmers have turned to cultivating tapioca, he added, because it needs less water and generates similar income.

Sugar cane output is expected to fall below 95 million tonnes both this year and next, he said. That was down from 105.95 million tonnes in 2014-15.

lots more here: Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 25, 2016, 04:51:26 PM »

2.8 million rai of farmland damaged by drought so far

 About 2.8 million rai of rice, other cash crops and fruit orchards in and outside irrigation areas have been damaged by drought affecting some 272,000 farming households, according to the Office of Agricultural Economics.

Latest survey conducted by the Office of Agricultural Economics shows that out of 2.8 million rai of farmland ravaged by drought, there are two million rai of rice farmland, about 860,000 rai of other cash crops and about 5,000 rai of fruit orchards. Total damage was estimated at 15.5 billion baht which was broken down into 8.5 billion baht for rice, 6.8 billion baht for other cash crops and the rest for fruit orchards.

Northern provinces account for most damage estimated at 6.9 billion baht or 45 percent of the total damage followed by the northeastern region’s 6.2 billion baht in damage or 40 percent of total damage.

full article:
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 25, 2016, 12:18:13 AM »

Water supplies in major dams continue to plunge

An aerial view of Chai Nat’s Chao Phraya dam. Supplies are measured at 5.96 metres above sea level during the latest check on Thursday, meaning usable water is expected to last for only the next three months. (Photo by Chudate Seehawong).

Water supplies in the four main dams of the Chao Phraya River basin continue to decrease, irrigation officials say, forcing authorities to dramatically lower mains pressure to popular tourist areas over Songkran.

Khon Kaen's Ubonratana dam, meanwhile, has sufficient supplies to last for just 11 days.

Dam director Worawit Raweenipapong said Thursday the water level of the reservoir had dropped to below critical point. It has just 16 million cubic metres of usable water, or 1% of capacity, which will feed taps only until April 4.

He said about 500 million cu/m of water had been held in reserve to be used in case of an emergency before the rainy season arrives.

full article: Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 24, 2016, 03:30:56 PM »

Thailand will have sufficient water for consumption until rainy season

The Royal Irrigation Department has expressed confidence that all areas across the country will have sufficient water for consumption until July this year.

The department's director, Thongpleo Kongchan said this year's drought situation was severe, affecting water volumes of major dams in the country. The director however confirmed there would not be a shortage of water for consumption until July.

The department's plans to manage the water in 10 major dams have been revised after their water volumes decreased to critical levels. The Ubonrat dam is the most critical with only 1% of usable water.

Meanwhile, Director-General of the Meteorological Department Songkran Akson said this year's rainy season in Thailand would start mid May and would be fully established in July.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 21, 2016, 05:18:16 PM »

Water crisis turns acute

Cautious resource management needed in the next few months to prevent greater damage

OVER THE NEXT four and a half months, Thailand will have to be extra careful with water management to prevent drought from causing far-reaching damage.

Some key dams in the country have already stopped releasing water for irrigating farmland. Their dwindling supplies are rationed for human consumption and preserving the ecological balance.

However, in some areas, the situation is getting so serious that agencies are having a tough time securing water even to keep faucets running.

More than 700 villages in the northeastern province of Si Sa Ket are struggling with a shortage of water for consumption.

"We have to send water trucks to affected villages including to temples and schools," Santawat Riewluang, chief of the provincial disaster prevention and mitigation office, said yesterday.

Dr Kitti Paopiamsap, president of the Chachoengsao Provincial Administrative Organisation, said the crisis in the eastern province is the worst in 20 years.

"We now have to prepare water for people's consumption," he said.

A dozen water trucks were requisitioned to carry 12,000 litres of water each to seriously hit areas, he said.

Suthep Noipairoj, director general of the Irrigation Department, has urged all sectors to save water so that limited supplies can sustain the country until the end of July.

The rainy season usually comes in May, but it is expected to arrive late this year.

Authorities need to ensure water availability until at least early August in case there is more delay.

To ease the water shortage in provinces such as Khon Kaen, Chon Buri and Suphan Buri, the Irrigation Department is preparing to tap the "dead storage" of some dams - the water left at the bottom of reservoirs for infrastructure safety purposes, which is normally not utilised.

Part of the volume of dead storage water in the Ubolrat, Bang Phra and Kra Siao dams will be pumped out to provide water for people in drought-hit areas.

The Provincial Waterworks Authority recently revealed that 12 of its water stations have run into shortages of raw water and 49 others face a risk of shortages.

Some areas in Nakhon Sawan, Khon Kaen and Nakhon Ratchasima get tap water only during certain periods of the day or week.

In many other areas, the agency is distributing only small quantities of tap water to limit water usage.

Local waterworks agencies are also trying to find alternative fresh sources of raw water.

full article: nationmultimedia
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 19, 2016, 11:50:14 AM »

Hotels on drought alert

Hoteliers in major tourist destinations are preparing measures to deal with the serious drought this summer.

Members of the Thai Hotels Association (THA) are running water-saving campaigns after being warned that this year's drought will be the worst in a decade.

"We have asked for cooperation from our member hotels to help save water. The drought is expected to be a big problem the whole nation will face together," said THA president Surapong Techaruvichit.

Sanpech Supabowornsthian, president of the THA's Eastern Chapter, said hotels in the eastern region should not have a water shortage because they are well prepared.

Many hotels, particularly big ones, have their own water reserves and some have already bought water.

"Many hotels in this region experienced a water shortage last year, so they don't want to face the same problem and have prepared already," Mr Sanpech said.

full article: Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 18, 2016, 06:34:14 PM »

Mekong river is rising in Chiang Rai province after China released water from dams

Residents living on the bank of Mekong river in Chiang Saen district of Chiang Rai have been warned to exercise caution as the level of the river may suddenly rise up after China reportedly released about 2,000 cubic metre of water/second from Jinhong dam starting March 15 and will last until April 10.

The Chiang Rai office of the Marine Department predicted that the level of water in the Mekong river in Chiang Saen district might go up 3-5 metres but it would not spill over the river bank.

Mr Niwat Roikaew, a leader of the Mekong-Lanna conservation group, however dismissed as propaganda China’s claim that the decision to release water downstream was intended to ease drought problem in downstream countries.

full article:
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 18, 2016, 12:06:30 PM »

Public assured of adequate water supplies in dry season

The Department of Internal Trade (DIT) has assured that there will be enough water for public consumption during this year’s dry season, which is expected to be longer than usual.

As the dry season is forecast to linger until July, DIT Director-General Wiboonlasana Ruamraksa has confirmed that the current water reserves will be enough for public demand. She said all 18 branches of the Metropolitan Waterworks Authority (MWA) in charge of Bangkok, Nonthaburi and Samut Prakan will set up water distribution points to serve residents. The MWA will also coordinate with the Royal Irrigation Department in regulating the release of water in the Chao Phraya River in accordance with the situation.

Meanwhile, the Provincial Waterworks Authority, which supervises 230 branches and 358 service units nationwide, has been building a reserve of raw water for tap water production. However, in drought-affected areas, the water pressure is reduced during the nighttime to conserve water in natural sources.

Meetings will be held with the Royal Irrigation Department on a weekly basis in an effort to constantly keep an eye on the water situation. If necessary, the department may consider diverting water from areas unaffected by the drought to other areas in trouble.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 18, 2016, 11:49:54 AM »

Bangkok people assured of adequate tap water for household consumption throughout summer

 The Metropolitan Waterworks Authority (MWA) yesterday ensured that there is enough raw water to produce tap water for household consumption and drinking throughout the dry season.

Assurance from MWA, the vital tap water producer for Bangkok, came after it was invited by the Department of Internal Trade (DIT) to discuss whether the current severe drought situation could affects its tap water production.

Also invited to the meeting is the Provincial Waterwork Authority (PWA), major tap water producer of tap water to distribute to people in the provinces.

At the meeting the MWA has affirmed that there is adequate amount of water to produce drinking and tap water throughout the drought season for the capital and its peripheral areas.

The MWA has pointed out that it has lowered tap water production by 10 per cent to reserve extra water, while also lowering the water pressure during the night to prevent further loss of unused water.

Meanwhile the PWA said it has been coordinating with the Royal Irrigation Department (RID) to better manage the water situation, where both agencies have held weekly meetings to closely follow up on the situation and work out plans to control the water quality to prevent impacts on local hospitals and factories.

full article:
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 17, 2016, 01:21:14 PM »

Water shortage grips half of country - officials

In this March 12 photo, heavy machinery is used to repair the energy dissipation area of the Chao Phraya dam in Chai Nat. Low water levels caused by the drought have allowed repairs to take place in the normally submerged area. (Photo by Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)

More than half of Thailand is gripped by water shortages from the drought, according to the Department of Water Resources, but the irrigation chief remains positive that supplies can last until the rainy season if everyone steps up conservation efforts.

Supoj Tovichakchaikul, director-general of the Department of Water Resources, said on Wednesday 43 provinces across the country were being hit by water scarcity. They include:

North -- Chiang Mai, Lampang, Lamphun, Phrae, Phayao.

Northeast -- Buri Ram, Surin, Chaiyaphum, Yasothon, Kalasin, Nong Khai, Nong Bua Lam Phu, Khon Kaen, Maha Sarakham, Mukdahan, Nakhon Phanom, Nakhon Ratchasima, Sakon Nakhon, Si Sa Ket, Udon Thani .

full article: Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 16, 2016, 06:09:36 PM »

University to recycle 'treated water' for farm use

Water used at Khon Kaen University will be treated and cleaned and redistributed to nearby village communities for agricultural use, to help alleviate the worsening impact of the drought.

University rector Kittichai Triratanasirichai, said five communities would benefit. The actual release of treated water, in cooperation with the irrigation office in Khon Kaen, will start by the end of March.

The treated water will be examined for quality, to ensure it is fit for farmland use with dissolved oxygen of at least 20 milligrammes per litre, but it will not meet standards for human consumption, he said.

The aim was to distribute 500  to 1,000 cubic metres of water to the villagers for farm use each day.

full article: Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 16, 2016, 04:56:44 PM »

China to release water from dam to alleviate SE Asia drought

A villager gets a bucket water from a well in a ruined village which has been underwater after the Mae Chang reservoir dried up in Lampang province March 12. The ruined village including ancient temple had been underwater for 34 years since the Mae Chang reservoir was built in 1982, the area has now re-emerged after water in the reservoir dried up caused by the severe drought. (EPA photo)

China will release water from a dam in its southwestern province of Yunnan to help alleviate a drought in parts of Southeast Asia, including Thailand, China's Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday.

The water will be released until April 10 from the Jinghong dam, ministry spokesman Lu Kang told a daily news briefing.

It will benefit Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam, Mr Lu added.

China "hopes it can be of help in alleviating the drought downstream", he said.

full article: Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 13, 2016, 08:33:47 PM »

Tap water a dribble in Korat villages

 Residents of Muang district are struggling to maintain their daily existence after their neighbourhoods were badly affected by slow to completely cut tap water supplies over the past week.

Officials at the Provincial Waterworks Authority’s Ban None Mai Daeng station in Chalerm Phrakiat district said on Sunday the station was facing a severe shortage with only 300,000 cubic metres of raw supplies available for tap production which will last less than a month.

About 27,000 families in 18 sub-districts covering Chalerm Phrakiat and parts of the nearby Muang district have been told to brace for worsening water problems.

In Muan Wai sub-district of Muang district, many villages have been hit by sporadic supplies of low volume tap water since early this week while some are facing a complete water stoppage. The situation is forcing people to travel to Nakhon Ratchasima municipal office to fill up their water containers to try to get by.

more on the situation here: Bangkokpost

Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 11, 2016, 02:35:42 PM »

Rainmaking efforts continue in Northeast, Central Plains

Cloud seeding operations are being performed continuously across the country in a bid to replenish reservoirs, particularly in the northeastern and central regions.

Mr Lersak Rewtarkulpaiboon, Director-General of the Department of Royal Rainmaking and Agricultural Aviation, reported progress of the department’s rainmaking mission, saying cloud seeding flights have already been conducted nationwide. He said an emphasis has been placed on the Northeast, where the drought situation is critical. The flights recently made in the region have successfully produced rainfall, replenishing Ubonrat Dam in Khon Kaen and Lam Takhong Dam in Nakhon Ratchasima.

Mr Lersak also indicated satisfactory results from the operations around Pa Sak Jolasid Dam in the Central Plains and in other areas in the western zone, including Prachuap Khiri Khan province.

In cooperation with the Royal Irrigation Department, the Director-General affirmed that the Department of Royal Rainmaking and Agricultural Aviation will continue to monitor the water situation closely and make sure that water management throughout the dry season will go according to plans.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 10, 2016, 01:17:09 PM »

Drought to damage almost half a million rice fields in Central Plain

 Drought which is affecting several parts of Thailand will ruin almost half a million rai of rice fields in the central region.

This was disclosed by Agriculture and Cooperatives Minister General Chatchai Sarikulya at a meeting yesterday to discuss the drought situation.

Gen Chatchai said rice fields likely to be affected by the water shortage are those grown off-season, while farmers who grew their seasonal  crops won’t be affected as they were all harvested.

They are rice fields grown along the Chao Phraya river in the Central region, and more than 400,000 rai are expected to be damaged by drought.

full article:

Bottled drinking water is sufficient

 Drinking bottled water producers assure the government that bottled water won't be running short although the country is going to face the worst water shortage problem in 20 years.

The assurance came after the Internal Trade Department (ITD) called bottled water producers from all regions for a meeting to discuss the water situation yesterday.

At the meeting, the ITD was assured by the producers that they have sufficient water supplies to produce drinking water and that they have no plan to increase the price of their products.

The water producers also promised to increase their stockpile of bottled waters by 20 percent to ease consumers’ concern over water shortage.

full article:
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 09, 2016, 03:27:24 PM »

Thai Government Puts Water on Special Price Control List

The Thai government has added drinking water to the special price control list to protect citizens as the country faces an impending drought. Internal Trade Department director-general Wiboonlasana Ruamraksa said the government was keeping a close eye on the drought’s impact, which went into effect earlier in the year.

Drinking water has been included in the special price control list for daily monitoring, according to Ms. Wiboonlasana. She did note that the drought will not impact the drinking water supply, so consumers need not be concerned.

The MWA (Metropolitan Waterworks Authority) urged households to reserve a minimum of 60 liters of drinking water for the drought season, which lasts until May. There will be less tap water available for households in Nonthaburi, Bangkok and Samut Prakan.

While the MWA is anticipating some issues with tap water production, it remains confident that it will be able to continue supplying tap water to its 12 million customers.

full article:
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 08, 2016, 05:07:59 PM »

4,000 artesian wells will be ready by April to ease water shortage problem

 Authorities concerned have stepped up the dredging of artesian wells hoping to dredge up to 4,000 wells within next month so there will be water for consumption and farming purpose to ease water shortage problem, said government spokesman Maj-Gen Sansern Kaewkamnerd today (Monday).

He disclosed that, so far, 2,192 artesian wells have been dredged – 1,104 wells for consumption and the rest for agricultural purpose.

As far as artificial rain-making is concerned, the spokesman admitted that the effort has not been very successful due to the low humidity in the air although the effort has been stepped up.

full article:
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 08, 2016, 04:41:08 PM »

Bottled drinking water producers called for meeting to ensure no hoarding or price increase

 The Internal Trade Department will call a meeting with 11 major producers of bottled drinking water to assess the problem of water for consumption and to make sure that the price of bottled drinking water is not increased.

An informed source said that the department planned to categorize bottled drinking water as “sensitive” product subjected to high priority monitoring to make sure that there is no shortage, no arbitrary price increase or no profiteering hoarding.

Meanwhile, water sources for tap water in northeastern provinces are quickly drying up posing a serious problem for Provincial Waterworks Authority.

In Udon Thani for instance, only 13 percent of water are left in Huang Luang dam for consumption prompting the business sector in the province, including the provincial chamber of commerce, hotels and hostels to start cutting down water consumption to ensure there is sufficient water until May when rains are expected.

full article:
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 08, 2016, 01:40:43 PM »

farmers storm weir demanding more water

Farmer protesters observe the low water level at the Mae Yom Weir in Phrae’s Song district on Monday. (Photo by Taweeporn Sookkasem)

A group of disgruntled farmers on Monday stormed the province’s main weir in Song district to demand officials open more sluice gates to quench their thirsty, drought-ravaged fields.

About 200 rice and fruit growers from tambons Dan Chumpon, Hua Muang and Thung Nao arrived at the Mae Yom Weir at 11am and refused to talk to the irrigational officials. They marched through to the sluice-gate control room to see if they had been opened.

full article: Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 07, 2016, 03:46:36 PM »

Drought in 42 provinces under close watch

The national drought monitoring centre is keeping a close watch on 42 provinces at risk of running out of water for household and other essential use, permanent secretary for agriculture Theerapat Prayoonsit said.

Mr Theerapat said the centre is chaired by Agriculture and Cooperatives Minister Chatchai Sarikulya and is also manned by the Interior Ministry staff including provincial governors of the respective provinces.

The centre is keeping a close watch on the sitution in the 42 provinces and was ready to provide help if they run out of household water, he said.  He did not name the 42 provinces.

"In general, water in major dams is, with proper management, still sufficient for consumption, pushing out brackish water and maintaining the eco-system throughout the dry season until the rain arrives, possibly in July.

more here: Bangkokpost

Royal rainmaking operation to be started nationwide

Department of Royal Rainmaking and Agricultural Aviation Director General Lersak Riewtrakulpaiboon said that the Department of Royal Rainmaking and Agricultural Aviation will be focusing on adding more water to the nation's four main dams including Bhumibhon Dam, Sirikit Dam, Kwae Noi Dam and Pasak Dam.

Pasak Dam will require a large volume of water to enhance its capability in allocating water resources to generate water for consumption.

The planes for the royal rainmaking operation have been prepared in addition to eight planes, which have been provided by Air Force, to distribute 6,500 tons of royal rain to the area.

However, the increased amount of water will depend on how severe the drought situation is. Currently, it is still necessary to request for public cooperation by conserving water usage.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 04, 2016, 11:58:56 AM »

Water levels critical in northeast

The drought situation is persisting in many provinces with water levels at Ratchaburi’s Huay Mai Teng Reservoir now at concerning levels.

Ratchaburi is experiencing its driest conditions in 15 years. Drone surveillance of its main reservoir has found that only 2.8 million cubic meters of water, or 8 percent of its capacity is left. Water for agriculture has been completely suspended.

Similarly, Ubon Rat Dam in Khon Kaen only has 638 million cubic meters of water, or 20 percent of its capacity with only 2 percent available for general usage. The region’s waterworks authority has had to prepare reserves by drawing water from nearby areas to avoid having to use possibly contaminated dam water.

In Udon Thani, Water Resource Department authorities have stepped up the drilling of ground water wells to supply water to Ta Boh district of nearby Nong Khai province, which no longer has clean water for drinking and usage.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 03, 2016, 04:25:54 PM »

Yes roger it's not looking good, but thailand seems to survive all that is thrown at it and pull through everytime, lets hope this situation will be the same and the rains come.

THE DROUGHT has now hit wildlife and could force animals to intrude into human communities for food and water as natural water sources dry up, an expert warned yesterday. However, the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation revealed that Khao Yai National Park and Kui Buri National Park had already prepared water for animals to minimise intrusions into inhabited areas.

The nation

The Bangkokpost reports that Lam Takhong's stored water 'will last until August'  Lam Takhong dam has enough stored water to provide household and tap supply until August in the area it serves, the dam's management announced on Thursday.

The announcement was issued by Suthiroj Kongkaew, director of the Lam Takhong dam, to deny reports by several news services that the dam reservoir held water sufficient only for the next two months.

What do you guys think should they cancel songkran or not ............
Posted by: Roger
« on: March 03, 2016, 02:45:32 PM »

Thaiga - been up North for a week and the water is really low in the 3 dams I've seen - looks 20% or less.
We watched a Lady quietly trying to chop weed grass in a dry paddy field and the ground was ROCK hard with little prospect of relief from the neighbouring dam which had cattle grazing on verdant grass - at the bottom.
Let's hope for a strong long rainy season.
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 03, 2016, 12:16:29 PM »

Drought exposes old road behind Lam Takhong dam

A 9km-long stretch of the old Mittraparb Road (Friendship Highway) has re-emerged after water levels at the Lam Takhong dam in Nakhon Ratchasima province dropped substantially. The 148km two-lane road from Saraburi to Nakhon Ratchasima was constructed with the help of the US government after World War II. The road was submerged after the dam was built. (Bangkok Post photo)

The critically low water level in the Lam Takhong reservoir has uncovered a long stretch of an old road built by US soldiers and submerged by the lake 48 years ago after the dam was completed.

The dam's reservoir, a major water source for this northeastern province, is down to 26% of its capacity due to the severe drought.

Towns and villages in 10 or more districts, including Pak Chong, Sikhiu, Sung Noen and Kham Thale So, rely on the reservoir for tap water production.

The inspection showed the supply has run dry, and the old Mittraparb Road (Friendship Highway), which has been underwater for 48 years, has now re-emerged for a distance of more than nine kilometres.

American soldiers helped build the 148km road running between Saraburi and Nakhon Ratchasima, with construction starting in 1955 during the administration of Field Marshel Plaek Piboonsongkhram, symbolising US-Thai friendship.

full article: Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 02, 2016, 11:46:58 AM »

As Taps Go Dry, Hua Hin Questions Immense Artificial Lagoon

Promotional image showing the MahaSamutr development in Hua Hin, Prachuap Khiri Khan province. Photo: MahaSamutr / Facebook

Thailand’s first manmade beach and huge artificial lagoon is raising eyebrows among residents facing a critical water supply problem.

MahaSamutr, a new luxury property development in Hua Hin was reportedly visited by the police this morning after local residents filed a complaint over its possible misuse of water, according to Matichon Online. The recently opened private club has filled a 72,000sqm lagoon while tap water service was disrupted in many households last week, and the reservoir supplying the club is critically low.

full article: khaosodenglish
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 02, 2016, 11:43:02 AM »

Lam Takhong dam has sufficient water for tap supply

A general view of Lam Takhong dam reservoir. (Photo by Prasit Tangprasert)

The amount of water in Lam Takhong dam is sufficient for production of tap water for the surrounding region until the rainy season arrives, provided people use water economically, the director of the dam, Suthiroj Kongkaew, said on Tuesday.

Lam Takhong dam reservoir now holds about 72 million cubic metres, or 24% of its capacity of 314.49 million cubic metres. This amount of available water was  sufficient to supply about 100 tap water plants in the Lam Takhong basin until August.

full article: Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 02, 2016, 11:21:49 AM »

Artificial rainmaking kicks off in subdued mood

Planes of the Agriculture Ministry parked at Wing 46 in Phitsanulok on Tuesday, waiting for suitable condition for cloud seeding to make artificial rain and relieve the drought in the lower northern provinces. (Photo by Chinnawat Singha)

Artificial rainmaking operations to combat the drought began officially on Tuesday, but lack of favourable conditions kept the planes on the ground.

But late on Tuesday afternoon the planes were still on the ground in Khon Kaen, Nakhon Ratchasima and Phitsanulok airports, with weather conditions not favourable for cloud seeding. And it was doubtful many would be flying on Wednesday

The 12 provinces severely affected by drought are Chiang Mai, Uttaradit, Phayao, Sukhothai, Nakhon Sawan, Nakhon Ratchasima, Maha Sarakham, Nakhon Phanom, Buri Ram, Kanchanaburi, Phetchaburi and Sa Kaeo.

full article: Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: March 01, 2016, 12:51:09 PM »

Big rain making operation starts to ease troubles from expected worst drought this year

The government yesterday launched the big ever artificial rain making operation to ease the expected worst drought in 20 years in the Central Plains, starting first in Nakhon Sawan where more than 30 aircrafts were used.

The operation involved more than 30 rainmaking aircrafts consisting of 22 aircrafts from the department and 8 aircrafts from the Royal Thai Air Force.

full article:
Posted by: thaiga
« on: February 29, 2016, 12:44:16 PM »

Khao San Road vows not to dampen Songkran fun

In defiance of PM's call for austerity in use of war, famous city tourist venue says it will be a failure if capital is short of water for festival.

A Khao San Road business leader says the Songkran Festival in April at the famous tourist area will not be affected by the government's call for no "water wars" during the festival due to the drought situation.

Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-o-cha on Saturday urged Thais to celebrate Songkran this year via the traditional "rod nam dam hua" ceremony - the pouring of water over the hands of elders.

But Khao San Road Business Association president Piyabut Jiwaramonikul said there would be no change to this year's Songkran celebration at one of the city's largest sites for celebrating the festival.

"I don't think Songkran celebrations for only three days will waste too much water because people usually enjoy the water wars by firing water guns, which need less amount of water than splashing water on each other," Piyabut said. "I can assure the tourists and the people that they will have fun on Khao San Road this Songkran as always, as we still have water in Bangkok."

more from: The nation
Posted by: Roger
« on: February 28, 2016, 03:04:48 PM »

Hi JF. That's really concerning.
I'm up in the North atm and in this area you can see new 'pits' and pipes being sunk for water everywhere.
The launching of rain making operations is an interesting one !
But taking more water from more pits and boreholes only improves the situation in a tiny area and takes more out of the water table.
Lets hope for consistent strong rains this coming season....
Posted by: Johnnie F.
« on: February 28, 2016, 08:44:09 AM »

drought crisis

No Songkran water wars, govt urges

PM wants cooperation from public amid fears about severe drought and low water levels in country's dams
THE government wants the famed Songkran Festival this year toned down to "rod nam dam hua" - pouring a small amount of water on the hands of revered elders to ask for blessings - in the face of the country's drought problem.

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha is concerned about the drought and has asked for public cooperation in saving water, while waterworks authorities are controlling water supplies, Government Spokesman Maj-General Sansern Kaewkamnerd said yesterday.

He said the government would soon campaign more to save water by asking the public to offer water blessings during Songkran instead of engaging in "water wars".

Along with saving water, the premier wants to preserve the good tradition of the festival, he added.

Sansern reported that Prayut was scheduled to lead related ministers on a visit to the Northeast from March 16-18 to inspect drought-hit areas, possibly at Udon Thani and Nong Khai provinces.

The spokesman dismissed reports that the entire country was facing severe water shortages.

He said the Royal Irrigation Department reported there were 3 billion cubic metres of water in four major dams while there was enough water in dams for people's general use and for maintaining dams' bio-systems and for pushing out seawater along the Chao Phraya River basin area.

Sansern said most farmers knew there was insufficient water for agricultural purposes so those growing rice would be doing so at their own risk.

The spokesman admitted some areas had been hit by severe drought, with drought disaster zones declared in 46 districts of 12 provinces.

He said the Cabinet had approved drought-relief measures worth Bt93 billion via the Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Co-operatives to aid some 670,000 farmers.

He said the government would increase water supplies by launching royal rainmaking operations from March 1 in Chiang Mai, Phitsanulok, Nakhon Sawan, Kanchanaburi, Udon Thani, Nakhon Ratchasima, Chanthaburi, Prachuap Khiri Khan and Surat Thani provinces and by digging 2,000 wells in the Chao Phraya River basin area.

Hospital crisis

Meanwhile, Nakhon Ratchasima Governor Wichian Chantharanothai and his team yesterday visited the 30-bed Phra Thong Kham Hospital, which is suffering a serious water shortage. That is particularly the case for cleaning medical instruments and for patient use - both bathing and consumption.

Wichian said the installation of a Bt400,000 salt water filtering system at the hospital would be completed early next month and that should alleviate the problem.

The hospital receives 10,000 litres of water a week from two tambon administrations. It needs about 100 litres a day to wash medical equipment.

Wichian said that to find a long-term solution the provincial health office had approved Bt1.8 million to build a water-filter facility at the hospital.

In Nakhon Ratchasima's Bua Yai district, many farmers have seen their rice paddies wither.

Ten districts in the province, including Bua Yai, have been declared drought-disaster zones.

It was reported that some 57,000 households and 466,000 rai (74,000 hectares) of farmland in the districts have been affected.

Irrigation Office 8 director Chitchanok Somprasert said water levels in the northeastern province's five main dams were falling.

The Lam Takhong Dam is at 26 per cent of capacity, the Lam Phra Phloeng Dam is at 63 per cent of capacity, the Lam Chae reservoir 28 per cent, the Mun Bon reservoir at 27 per cent and the Lam Plai Mat Dam is at 50 per cent.

The Nation
Posted by: thaiga
« on: February 27, 2016, 12:57:50 PM »

Songkran Will Go On Despite Drought: Tourism Authority

Despite threats of persistent and severe drought, the Tourism Authority of Thailand said the annual water fight festival that marks the traditional Thai New Year will go on as normal.

more here:
Posted by: thaiga
« on: February 26, 2016, 06:58:11 PM »

Will we have a songkran i wonder, as the water shortage looks like it's getting critical, maybe they will reduce the number of days.

Thailand to face worst drought in 20 years

As Thailand is expected to face the worst drought in 20 years and that four million rai of paddy fields are expected to be affected, authorities are now urging people to use water economically and possibly using less water in celebrating the Songkran festival.

full article:
Posted by: thaiga
« on: February 26, 2016, 12:52:11 PM »

Drought seen shrinking sugar cane yield to 4-year low

Drought is set to cut the country’s sugar cane crop to the lowest in at least four years, curbing production of the sweetener as forecasts for a global deficit increase.

Cane output may fall below 100 million tonnes in 2015-16, Thai Sugar Millers Corp said in a statement Thursday. It would be the first time below that level since 2011-12 and compares with 106 million tonnes last year.

full article: Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: February 18, 2016, 06:33:49 PM »

Doi Saket's lotus flowers wither and die

Lotus flowers at Nong Bua Prachao Luang reservoir in Chiang Mai's Doi Saket district have withered and died as severe drought hits this northern province. (Photo by Cheewin Sattha)

The severe drought in Doi Saket district has destroyed one of its major attractions -- the lotus flowers in Nong Bua Luang Reservoir that symbolise the area.

Chalerm Sarnpaeng, mayor of tambon Choeng Doi municipality, said the tambon is experiencing the most severe drought in the past 10 years.

The water level in ............

full article: Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: February 18, 2016, 06:27:07 PM »

Moon river dries up faster than usual in Buri Ram

The Moon river in Buri Ram’s Satoek district has dropped sharply and prematurely exposing mid-river sand dunes and sparking off concern that they may not be enough water for consumption to last through the hot season.

Residents living along the river in Tambon Tha Muang, Tambon Sakae and Tambon Satoek of Satoek district said that usually the river would run dry exposing the sand dunes in late March or early April but, this year, it came early in February.

Residents who make their living by fishing ..............

full article:
Posted by: thaiga
« on: February 18, 2016, 06:11:24 PM »

DDPM begins drought-relief campaign

The Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation (DDPM) has carried out a survey of 11 provinces severely hit by drought in preparation for the introduction of emergency measures.

DDPM Director General Chatchai Promlert has disclosed that provinces needing urgent help included Chiang Mai, Uttaradit, Nakhon Ratchasima, Nakhon Phanom, Kanchanaburi and Phetchaburi. The DDPM has sent its officials to affected areas to assess remaining water supplies and estimate people’s needs. All the information will be used to offer solutions that suit individual zones.

more here: NNT
Posted by: thaiga
« on: January 30, 2016, 12:31:51 PM »

Water reserves sufficient, insists RID

Chao Phraya dams 'able to meet demand'

Water reserves in reservoirs which feed the Chao Phraya River basin will be sufficient for consumption in the upcoming dry season, deputy chief of the Royal Irrigation Department (RID) Suthep Noipairoj said on Friday.

more from: Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: January 29, 2016, 04:53:39 PM »

More than half of the country are short of water

 About 59 percent of the total area of the country covering 548 districts are now classified as water shortage area, according to the National Water Resources Committee.

Of the 548 districts listed as water shortage, 138 districts are located in the Chao Phraya river basin and covered by irrigation system where second-crop cultivation is widespread.

full article:

And from the Bangkokpost

Plenty of water, but moving it to dry areas a problem

Enough water remains for consumption this dry season, but distributing it to non-irrigated areas will be difficult, government authorities said on Friday.

At a news conference at Government House, Supoj Tovichakchaikul, director-general of the Department of Water Resources, said that from January to April, usable water reserves are calculated at 20.7 billion cubic metres, comprised of 19.3 billion cu/m in irrigated areas and 1.4 cu/m in non-irrigated areas.

Water demand in the four-month period is projected at 15.5 billion cu/m, of which 8.3 billion cu/m of demand is seen coming from non-irrigated areas, and the rest from irrigated zones.
Posted by: thaiga
« on: January 28, 2016, 04:23:37 PM »

Yes very serious roger. but .......... Thailand seems to have the habit of recovering very quickly
Dang-mo it is then - amid the drought crisis.

Rice farmers use cool weather to switch to watermelons

Posted by: Roger
« on: January 27, 2016, 04:05:48 PM »

Thanks Thaiga for the update - just 4 months or so to go then, until the beginning of the rainy season - that's if there is to be one in 2016 ! It's serious !
Posted by: thaiga
« on: January 27, 2016, 01:20:50 PM »

Drought in Isaan growing more severe

The drought situation in the northeastern region has increased in severity with 10 districts of Nakhon Ratchasima now in dire need of water.

Authorities in Nakhon Ratchasima have had to send out 6 water trucks carrying over 36 thousand liters of water to aid residents affected by worsening drought conditions in the province. A total 10 districts have reported major impact from the situation with as many as 60 thousand households feeling the effects of the water shortage. Local administrators have exhausted 50 million baht in enacting measures such as water dispersion and canal dredging to alleviate the plight of residents.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: January 21, 2016, 11:49:36 AM »

Severest drought in 20 years hits Khon Kaen

Khon Kaen province is facing its severest water shortage in two decades, with Ubonrat Dam at only 27% of its holding capacity, according to the provincial fisheries office.

Provincial fisheries chief Nawarat Jitpiromsri said that with such a small quantity of water the province is certain to face the severest drought in 20 years in 2016.

The provincial water management committee had asked farmers to definitely not plant a second crop this year, or raise fish in floating baskets, he said.

Posted by: thaiga
« on: January 20, 2016, 06:30:22 PM »

Rice growers drilling wells in dry riverbed

Rice growers draw groundwater from a well drilled in the dry Yom River in Bang Rakam district, Phitsanulok, on Wednesday. (Photo by Chinnawat Singha)

Some rice farmers in Phitsanulok province are drilling wells in their dry riverbed to get around the Irrigation Department's warning not to grow off-season crops due to the water shortage, insisting it's the only livelihood they know.

About 100 rice growers in Bang Rakam district of the northern province were now depending on underground water from wells drilled right in the middle of the Yom, the main river running through the district, said Wirat Phutkosa, head of Moo 2 village in tambon Chumsaeng Songkhram of Bang Rakam district.

full article: Bangkokpost
Posted by: thaiga
« on: January 20, 2016, 02:16:43 PM »

Government to expedite relief measures to help farmers affected by drought

The government is planning to divert water from alternative sources to parched provinces as part of its drought relief measures.

Chief of Armed Forces Development Command General Hassapong Yuwanawattanaha visited Ang Thong province to observe the canal dredging operation in Pho Thong district. A group of soldiers have been dredging Khlong Wat Sai Canal in an attempt to create a water retention area.