B4bn water shortage plan in pipeline
NAKHON RATCHASIMA: The Regional Irrigation Office 8 yesterday unveiled a fourbillion-baht project to channel water from the Pasak Jolasid dam in Lop Buri to Lam Takong reservoir in Nakhon Ratchasima, to address a water shortage in the province.
Sunai Klummon, chief engineer overseeing Nakhon Ratchasima, said the agency had completed the design work for the project, intended to ensure an adequate supply of tap water in five districts of the province — Muang, Sikhiu, Sung Noen, Kham Thale So and Chalerm Phrakiat.
He said the project would be divided into three parts: a water pumping station at the Pasak Jolasid dam; another at Muak Lek reservoir in Saraburi; and a tunnel through Nong Yang Sua Mountain in Saraburi.
The first water pumping station would be on the downstream side of the Pasak Jolasid dam, pushing water from the dam along a 9.9-km pipeline through tambon Nong Bua in Phatthana Nikhom district, Lop Buri, to the Muak Lek reservoir, which could hold around 60 million cubic metres.
The second station would be immediately downstream of Muak Lek reservoir, drawing water from the catchment to Nong Yang Sua Mountain through a 4.8-km pipeline.
Lastly, a tunnel three metres in diameter will be cut through the mountain. It will be 24.8km long, from the mountain to Pak Chong district in Nakhon Ratchasima. Water flowing into canals will be diverted to the Laem Takong reservoir.
Mr Sunai said the office was now ready for the environmental impact assessment (EIA) to begin. A three-million-baht budget for the study had already been approved by the government. The project’s design will be proposed to a provincial supervisory committee for consideration, so the EIA can start soon, he said.
Meanwhile, community success in completing its own kaem ling projects without relying on state funding will be displayed for Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha during his visit to Sena district this month.
Provincial governor Sujin Chaichumsak said yesterday both pilot projects were based on the water retention zone concept, called kaem ling or monkey cheeks, initiated by the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej.
The premier will be briefed when the cabinet gathers at Phranakhon Si Ayutthaya Rajabhat University int ambon Phra Nakhon Si for a meeting on Sept 19.
The province has already completed 16 pilot projects in its 16 districts since April. Local authorities called for bids from companies to excavate the soil from some areas, mostly dried waterways or ponds.
Mr Sujin said the two Sena projects involved excavation of land and the temporary conversion of rice fields to store water and prevent flooding during the rainy season.
An embankment of sandbags is built outside a shophouse to keep out water from the Chao Phraya River during high tide in Tha Tien area of Bangkok. The surge will be compounded by water flow from upstream provinces expected from Sept 19-20.