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Thailand to Be a Model for Sustainable Water Supply

20 April 2015

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha said that Thailand has come up with strategies for water resource management throughout the entire system, which is expected to bear fruit in late 2015.
In his televised national address on 17 April 2015 in the program "Return Happiness to the People, the Prime Minister said that the countrys water resource management strategies had been hailed by the United Nations at the recent World Water Day event. The event, held on 23 March 2015 in Bangkok, was organized by UNESCO and UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP).
He said that the United Nations was satisfied with Thailands plan to tackle water shortages and provide people with easier access to water sources. It wanted Thailand to be a model for sustainable water supply and the prevention of water shortages in the future.
In this event, he said, Thailand would "take a leading role in Asia to ensure the sustainable supply of water for consumption with a plan to develop green industries that consume less water. Thailand is taking a "holistic approach to the water problem.
Prime Minister Prayut stressed the need for Thailand to prepare for water shortages, saying that His Majesty the King touched on this issue many years ago. In this regard, he said, Thailand will adopt agricultural techniques that consume less water.
It will simultaneously ease problems concerning water for consumption, agriculture, and flood prevention. Moreover, water quality in 22 river basins must be improved. A volume of water would be allocated to push seawater out of rivers, while watershed areas must be rehabilitated.
The Prime Minister explained that several projects on water resource management are likely to produce concrete results later this year. For instance, the Government has improved the irrigation system in the existing 35,000 million rai (14,000 million acres) of farmland. It will develop new water sources for 1.6 million rai (640,000 acres) of farmland, as well.
More than 2,000 natural water sources and waterways will be rehabilitated, and a number of ponds that have turned shallow in various rice fields and communities will be dredged. Groundwater will be drilled for agriculture covering 200,000 rai (80,000 acres) of farmland.
As for water for consumption, the Prime Minister said that the Government would develop the waterworks system for 2,310 villages and increase the efficiency of the rural waterworks supply in 683 locations. Drinking water and ground water will also be provided for 700 schools and communities this year.
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