Researcher urges Pattaya to stop debating, start acting to save beachfront

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The clock continues to tick on Pattaya Beach’s erosion problem and, at the latest in a series of meetings, researchers who predicted the beach would disappear within five years urged the city to finally get moving on plans to save it.

Chulalongkorn University researcher Thanawat Jarupongsakul again proposed the city approve one of four restoration projects to reverse erosion that is sweeping 10,000 cu. meters of sand out to sea each year. Parts of Pattaya Beach are now just five meters wide (at high tide) and, he said, unless action is taken soon, the sand would entirely disappear.

High tide in North Pattaya.  Researchers say that if something isn’t done soon, all the sand will be washed out to sea. High tide in North Pattaya.  Researchers say that if something isn’t done soon, all the sand will be washed out to sea.

Pattaya can either build a breakwater, dredge sand and refill the beach, add sand underwater at the north and sound ends of the beach to alter currents or dump sand offshore to lessen the impact of waves, he said.

Thanawat said his research has already done a thorough study on oceanic and land geography, environmental impact, meteorological and shore structure, economical possibilities. The next step will be a public hearing, he concluded.

City officials have been debating how to remedy the erosion problems for months, but have done little more to this point other than debate the feasibility, funding and legality of the beach restoration.

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