Anupong confident flood situation manageable
The rice fields in Phu Kham Yao district in Phayao province have been
under the water for more than a week and the plants are rotting,
the harvest lost. The villagers are calling for better water management.
(Photo by Saiarun Pinaduang)
The flood situation in the North and Central regions is manageable
with a joint effort by the Interior, Agriculture and Cooperatives,
and Natural Resources and Environment ministries, according to
a confident Interior Minister Anupong Paojinda.
But for many farmers it is already too late and their drowned crop
has rotted. Gen Anupong gave his assurance on Tuesday amid reports
of conflict between the Royal Irrigation Department and Ayutthaya
provincial authorities over a water retention plan to ease flooding
in the province.
He said the three ministries would integrate their water management
Update: Flooding reaches Ayutthaya industrial area
Floods reach Bangkok: Don Muang 'may be dry' by weekend
Incessant rain in the North had filled up the Ping, Wang, Yom and
Nan rivers in the North and the flood surge as the water runs south
to the Gulf has reached provinces in the Chao Phraya basin.
With such a large volume flowing downriver, some of the water
must be drained to retention areas to prevent flooding. In doing so,
efforts must be made to minimise the damage to farmers and
In areas downstream, water must be drained from canals and fields
in preparation to take the run-off. Near the coast, the ebb and low
tides of the Gulf are also important factors in water management,
Gen Anupong said officials in charge of water management were
now trying to divert water to be stored in kaem ling retention areas
north of the Chao Phraya dam. The excess must be released
downstream through the dam.
"We know that by discharging water at the rate of 1,000-1,200 cubic
metres per second flooding will occur in the Chao Phraya basin
from Ayutthaya province downward.
But I still believe we will be able to keep the situation under control,"
he added. The interior minister said during the past month 38
provinces were declared disaster areas. Now only nine of them --
Kamphaeng Phet, Sukhothai, Phitsanulok, Phichit, Nakhon Sawan,
Phangnga, Uthai Thani, Phayao and Chai Nat -- are still zoned
As for budget funding for flood relief, each province can ask for
more from the Central Fund if the regular allocation is not enough,
Gen Anupong said the three ministries will make their own assessment
how much money they will need to spend within the scope of their
respective responsibilities. He believed the situation would not
deteriorate beyond flash floods for a certain period.
Agriculture and Cooperatives Minister Chatchai Sarikulya also
expressed confidence the flood crisis of 2011 would not be repeated
as dams in North and the Central Plains would be able to accept
The best way to manage the flood was to release it to the sea through
large waterways, he said.
Based on information from the Disaster Prevention and Mitigation
Department, 50,000-60,000 rai of farmland in 10 provinces had been
inundated, Gen Chatchai said.
Despite all the present and past assurances from the government,
villagers are now suffering from the flood.
Techaphat Manowong, a village chief in tambon Mae Ing of Phu
Kham Yao district in Phayao province, said more than 5,000 rai
of rice fields in Dok Kham Tai plain had been under water for
more than a week and the young plants had already rotted,
which meant a 100% loss for the farmers.
Crops in another 5,000 rai of rice field in Thung Lor plan where
the rice was almost ready for harvest had also been under water for
more than a week. He estimated the economic loss from the flood
would reach 100 million baht. In Phitsanulok's Bang Rakam
district, Son and Somnuek Duangtoy said they have been working
hard to harvest as much of their drowned rice crop as they could.
They hoped they could still dry the grain and sell it at 2,000 baht
a tonne, which was well below what they had expected but still
better than leaving it to rot under the water.
The couple planted their 12-rai field over 80 days go and had delayed
harvesting the crop because the grain had little weight due to
the drought but now they were just hoping to at least recoup the
40,000 baht it cost to plant and grow it.
News,General,Bangkok Post,27 September 2016.
This statement means to clam down the fear of the flood crisis
as in 2011.
But the fact is that now the farmers have suffered from flood
and their crops already damaged.
We should have the sustainable plan to help the farmers solve the
flood problem , also the drought and stop this cycle.