A gentle reminder to minimise water usage this Songkran to help the country’s ongoing drought crisis which is said to be the worst in 20 years!
Drought desperation: Bangkok officially cuts Songkran short……
As the dry season in Thailand kicks in, water levels in the country’s dams are at the lowest point since 1994, said Suthep Noipairoj, director-general of the Royal Irrigation Department.
“This year sees the lowest irrigation water level since 1994”
The usage of water in Bangkok usually triples during the Songkran festival.
As the nation is facing its worst water shortage in twenty years, Bangkok decided it will shorten Songkran celebrations from four to three days, as the festival will be held on April 12-14 across the city, according to deputy governor Amorn Kijchawengkul.
The city expects to save 5 billion litres of water this year by shortening the festival, Daily News reported.
Thailand has been hit by severe drought, with water levels in the country’s big dams at their lowest since 1994, and drought disaster zones have been declared in 46 districts of 12 provinces.
The government is preparing for a water conservation campaign and has asked people to adopt the traditional method of rod nam dam hua [sprinkling a small amount of water on others] when celebrating the Songkran festival and refrain from throwing buckets of water to reduce water use.
Traditionally people poured just a little water on other people’s hands as a way of blessing each other during the festival.
The govt. assures the country will not run out of water, but said there are real concerns about the lack of it, so the government will intensify efforts to raise awareness and promote conservation.
The govt. encourages citizens to spend some dry quality time with their family on April 15 instead, as the famous festival marks the Thai New Year.
Water fights will only be allowed until 9pm each evening to save water.
While the celebrations usually last until late at night in areas like Khao San and Silom Roads, each district has now been instructed to publicize the new rules to locals and tourists.
CentralWorld had agreed to cooperate with the city’s policy and will cancel their water filling stations, which means you have to bring your own water from home.
Happy Eco-friendly Songkran 2016!