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Climate Change Affecting My Beautiful Country, Thailand By City Tech Blogger Patty Arunyavikul

Thailand is one of many countries that is affected by climate change. According to the article from “Open Development”, Thailand has about 70 million people living in the country and most of the population lives near rural and agriculture areas. These people are at risk of extreme weather events like floods and droughts which are occurring more often and became more drastic due to climate change. One of the major floods in Thailand’s history was during 2011 which caused severe damages to the rice production and economic.

In the journal’s introductory, “Climate Change Impacts on Agricultural Products in Thailand: A Case Study of Thai Rice at the Chao Phraya River Basin”, it stated that climate changes affected the agriculture by increasing the temperature, changing the rainfall rate, the water-preservation and soil fertility. Therefore, tropical areas are most affected due to these change factors. Thailand is within the tropical belt of South East Asia which is why the country is greatly affected by climate change. The journal also quoted the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change that “a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods.” Thailand is divided into five geography regions in which include North, Northeast, Central, East, and South regions. Apparently, Thailand’s central area is called “the rice bowl of Asia” because it is the region of river basin. This river basin is famously known as Chao Phraya River basin (CPRB) which was the largest river basin and the most fertile area in Thailand. In 2011, summer season, Chao Phraya River basin was where one of the most devastated floods occurred in Thailand. This event resulted in 800 deaths and affected 13.6 million people according to the journal of “The 2011 Great Flood in Thailand: Climate Diagnostics and Implications from Climate Change”. Also, studies by Taichi Tebakari and Shuichi Kure, has shown that floods like the one in 2011 will occur again and many more in the future due to the rainfall. The droughts and floods had damaged many rice farm in Thailand. Thailand being the largest rice exporters and over 40% of the population eats rice. This makes rice one of the most important thing in Thailand.

Bangkok the capital of Thailand is at risk due to the increase of sea level because of climate change. About 10 million people lives in Bangkok and the area is sinking 10 centimeters annually in which the city will eventually disappear into the sea in span of time. The increase in ocean temperature and the glacier and small ice caps melting caused the sea-level to rise. The IPCC, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, predicted that the sea levels will be from 18 to 60 centimeters by 2100. Climate change increased the frequency and intensity of the tropical storms during the last 35 years according to the journal, “Climate Change and Thailand: Impact and Response”.

After researching about the effects of climate change in my country, it made me think about the Tsunami back in 2004 that created a disaster in Thailand and killed nearly 5395 people according to the article, “Tsunami in Thailand—Disaster Management in a District Hospital”.  I always wondered if climate change had something to do with that Tsunami that ruined many parts of my country. With the rise of sea level in Bangkok, it is extremely risky if another devastating Tsunami occurs because apparently these two factors are correlated according to the article called, “A modest 0.5-m rise in sea level will double the tsunami hazard in Macau”.

 

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