The Nation



Saltwater intrusion set to worsen, expert says

Saltwater intrusion is threatening to worsen next year, as seawater levels have continued to rise.

If the problem is not stemmed, brackish-water fisheries operators in Samut Songkhram, Samut Prakan, Nakhon Pathom, Chachoengsao and Bangkok would face adverse impacts, Hydro and Agro Informatics Institute (HAII) director Royol Chitradon warned yesterday.

"We will need to store 1,800 million cubic metres of water to keep out saltwater and protect such areas," he said.

He pointed out that saltwater intrusion was now hitting these areas for 12 hours a day, not eight hours as in the past.

According to the HAII forecast, Thailand's rainfall will range from 1,500 to 1,600 millimetres next year. It is higher than 1,400 millimetres this year.

"The rainy season will start around May," Royol said.

He believed the Eastern region, which includes Trat, Chanthaburi and Rayong, would see huge rainfall.

Anond Snidvongs, who heads the Geo-Informatics and Space Technology Development Agency (Public Organisation), said that although high rainfall was expected between August and September next year, indicators did not point to a risk of serious flooding.

"I am more concerned about haze," he said.

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