Water situation in Chao Phraya river basin critical


BANGKOK, 12 February 2014  A serious shortage of water is expected in the Chao Phraya river basin after local farmers exceedingly grew second-rice in the area, prompting the government to issue a ban to prevent further cultivation. 

Minister of Agriculture and Cooperatives Yukol Limlaengthong said the water situation of the Chao Phraya river basin was now critical due to overconsumption of water for agriculture. Second-rice cultivation had exceeded limits with over 73% of water allocated for the area during drought this year having been used already, the minister said.

The Royal Irrigation Department had adjusted its water management plan so that farmers had sufficient water for farming, according to Mr Yokol.

The department has announced that it will stop providing water for agriculture in the Chao Phraya river basin from 1 February 2014 onward. The ministry’s assistance measures for farmers will be submitted to the Water and Flood Management Commission and the Cabinet next week.