Water Management: Glass Flood Barriers

Given that global climate change is causing an increasing risk of floods over extended areas, more attention is required by governments, organizations and individuals concerning how to protect themselves and their loved ones and property from the waters.

Read the full article here.

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Water Management: Passive Flood Defences

As global climate change causes the  threat of floods to occur on a much more  regular level than before, although the  occurrence is still unpredictable, it increasingly makes sense to be pro-active  rather than reactive in planning for flood management. Pro-active management  puts measures in place before they are needed and, as long as they work  properly, prevent the need for remedial action. This, of course, is much more  cost-effective than waiting for something to happen and then trying to deal with  it.

Read the full article here.

Water Management: Floating Houses

One way of dealing with increasing flood problems is to build houses (and even  one day entire communities) that float. This is a concept that has already  started to come into practice in, for example, Canada, where the terrain and climate can be unfriendly and  so living on one of the numerous lakes can be an attractive option.

Read the full article here.

Salaya Cleaning

We have been to Salaya this morning to move the little girl’s possessions from her previous dorm room to her new one – just one hundred metres away or thereabouts but in a largely unaffected area. Although her room had been on the first floor, the whole of the house is pretty much ruined.

The water level is very evident – waist high for me and rather higher for the womenfolk. The amount of mud and other matter in the water can be imagined from the dirtiness of the marks everywhere. The remnants of the mud and various bits of detritus are still hanging around everywhere.

The photos do not, of course, convey the smell or the amount of dust in the air, both of which are significant and detrimental to health, presumably. Pretty much everything inside the house which was touched by the water was ruined and is being thrown out. On the way out there, we saw many piles of rubbish which were household goods (or garden goods) which had been affected and discarded by people. Then again, it is an ill wind and so forth, and there are a number of water pickers (a better word than scavengers, I have decided) who are looking through the piles of rubbish for items that can be cleaned, rescued and either used or perhaps sold.

Along the front road facing Mahidol University in particular, the business owners are starting to open up – some are still clearing out the mud, some are pouring new layers of concrete over frontages (the water has opened up many potholes) and life is at least offering to return to normal. Good luck to them all, there is not much in the way of insurance for this.

The road back from Salaya to central Bangkok is passable now, although there are a few patches of water. The deepest is at the corner from the university road on to the expressway, where the water comes up perhaps half a metre on the left hand side of the road and we went into a concealed pothole – but non-small cars and motor bikes can make it through without serious problems if using care.

Flood Threat Recedes from Ladprao 64

We have made it to Sunday lunchtime and the water is generally receding. The klnogs and reservoirs are all quite full so it is possible that a burst bank might lead to localized flooding – which might also result from sabotage of the existing sandbags and barriers.

Other than that, though, it looks like we really are going to get away with it here in Ladprao 64. We are one of a number of little pockets who have kept dry – as I mentioned before, it is not really possible to be able to predict in advance how floods unprecedented in modern Bangkok will affect areas of variable elevation. If the same thing happens next year, presumably authorities will have learned from this year and so do things a little differently and, hence, the pattern of flooding will change in ways equally unpredictable. Perhaps we would get our feet wet while people who suffered this year get away with it.

An alternative would be for the authorities to take a properly long-term and large-scale view of the situation and mobilize the resources – well, there is not much chance of that because of obstruction from certain institutions who would think their role as Green Father Christmas will be threatened, not to mention other vested interests.

Never mind – lucky that global climate change is all a con so we don’t have to worry about this kind of thing becoming ever more likely in the future. Eh? Oh.

The Worst Has, Once More, Passed Us By

The situation in our part of Ladprao remains the same today – there is no change in the nearby sois and the rain shower that occurred an hour or so ago did not stimulate any overflows. The msot recent high tide has passed (last night was Loy Krathong with its attendant full moon) and reports are that flood levels in most places are starting to decline. There is still a long way to go, of course, and many people have suffered because of the natural disaster.  Let us hope things now go as predicted and the waters recede so that we are back more or less to a normal way of life within a couple of weeks.

We have not heard of people breaking down dikes or barriers recently – have they stopped doing it, are they still doing it but no one is reporting it or was the damage actually caused by the fingers of the invisible hand?

The cost of the floods has been enormous, with more than 500 people now said to have been killed as a result.  Attention increasingly shifts to the need to rebuild the manufacturing sector and restoring tourism, investor confidence and so forth. It would be nice to think that, at this time of tragic emergency, all sectors of society will join together …..

Alas, no.

Disappointingly but as widely expected, bloodstained hypocrite Abhisit Vejjajiva is leading the attempt to try to undermine the democratically elected government in concert with an aacademic from Chulalongkorn University who is planning to sue on some strange basis – Chulalongkorn University also gave us the doctors who broke the Hippocratic Oath by refusing to treat police officers who had been wounded by the neo-fascist PAD thugs. Expect lengthy stories in the press about obscure claims of misconduct as the forces of reaction try to engineer another judicial coup. They have learned nothing.

Wednesday: Relentlessly Dry on Ladprao 64

Some water has made it to Rama II Road – gateway to the South – so it will soon be time for the people down there to have their own experience of the flood.

Governor of Bangkok MR Sukhumband, whose antics have not covered him glory, is apparently offering jobs at 300 baht per day for people willing to clean up the rubbish from flood-affected areas in Bangkok.

Apart from that, things remain the same. Our university has pushed back the start of the next term to the 28th, perhaps by that time it will be possible to make it out to Pathum Thani. We will, as ever see.