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In Remembrance of H.M. King Bhumibol Adulyadej
Royal Initiatives of King Bhumibol Guiding Water Resource Management

15 November 2016

Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha stated that His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej had granted guidelines for water resource development and that the Government has been adopting the royal initiatives to handle the water issue.
 
In his address on the program "From the Sufficiency Economy Philosophy to Sustainable Development Goals on 11 November 2016, the Prime Minister urged the people to understand the Governments intention to tackle water problems on a sustainable basis.
 
He also called for cooperation, saying that the Government is ready to listen to all views and suggestions. He explained that water resource management must be carried out in the whole system. For instance, excess water in one area will need to be released to another through the irrigation system and the kaem ling project.
 
Literally meaning "monkey cheek, kaem ling is a well-known flood-control project initiated by His Majesty King Bhumibol, who observed that most monkeys, when they obtain bananas, usually store them in their cheeks. They would chew and swallow them later as needed.
 
His Majesty modeled the concept for water retention after the way monkeys eat bananas by temporarily storing excess water during heavy rains and afterwards gradually draining it. This technique helps alleviate the flood problem effectively. It also helps store water to ease drought problems.
 
His Majesty believed that reservoirs built on both sides of the Chao Phraya River, which flows through Bangkok to the sea, could hold excess floodwater in the monsoon and release them into the sea at low tide. He suggested that the Royal Irrigation Department construct large water retention reservoirs near the coast, to store water.
 
New water gates were also constructed to release water into the sea during low tide and closed during high tide to prevent seawater from flooding the reservoirs and the surrounding areas. The kaem ling project proved its ability to hold excess water to help alleviate drought.
 
His Majesty King Bhumibol, who was honored as the Father of Water Resource Management, was long involved in water resource development and management. Since his accession to the throne in 1946, he worked to improve the standards of living of the Thai people, particularly farmers, whose lives depend greatly on having adequate supplies of water for their farming.
 
His Majesty initiated many projects to develop water resources for agricultural and other purposes. The water issue forms part of Thailands national agenda, and the royal holistic approach is emphasized in the countrys integrated water resource management for sustainability.
 
 
Foreign Office, The Government Public Relations Department, Office of the Prime Minister
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