A new water foundation to help in water management has been established, with His Majesty the King’s donation of 84 million baht to the start-up fund.
The Secretary-General of the Chaipattana Foundation, Dr. Sumet Tantivejkul, serves as Chairman of the new organization, named “Utokapat Foundation under the Royal Patronage of His Majesty the King.”
The Director of the Hydro and Agro Informatics Institute, Mr. Royol Chitradon, said that the royal donation was granted following a request by the institute, which is a public organization under the Ministry of Science and Technology. His Majesty also allowed the use of Phra Maha Phichai Mongkut, the Great Crown of Victory, as the logo of the foundation.
He explained that the word “Utokapat” means water development. This foundation will deal with water development and it is regarded as the first water-related foundation under the patronage of His Majesty the King.
Mr. Royol said that the Utokapat Foundation will work with various water-related agencies in handling water management in Thailand appropriately, in line with the conditions of each area. During the severe flooding in Thailand in 2011, the country’s water management faced a problem and needed to be improved for greater efficiency. The Utokapat Foundation also serves as a water research agency and provides financial support for water research projects.
Giving an interview at the official opening of the foundation on 25 April 2012, Dr. Sumet Tantivejkul, Chairman of the Foundation said that the foundation would focus on coordinating with water management-related agencies. Dr. Sumet also serves as the Government’s Strategic Committee for Water Resources Management.
Recognized as the Father of Water Resource Management in Thailand, His Majesty the King is aware of the importance of water. His initiatives in managing water resources have eased the water shortage problem and others concerning pollution, drought, and flooding.
He has always advocated a lifestyle in harmony with nature and takes a holistic approach to water resource management, with measures to handle water from its origin as a droplet to the last drop released back into nature. In the words of His Majesty, "Water is life." This reflects his deep understanding and appreciation of the substance in terms of the people's livelihood and the country's survival.
The Government has also adopted His Majesty the King’s advice on water management in an effort to deal effectively with the flooding situation in Thailand.