Enhancing resilience to future hydro-meteorological extremes in the Mun River Basin in Northeast of Thailand
AIT completed project ENRICH in collaboration with the University of Exeter, UK. For AIT, the National Research Council of Thailand (NRCT) and the Thailand Science Research and Innovation (TSRI) sponsored five million Baht for three and a half years (September 2018-March 2022). Under the contract between AIT and NRCT/TSRI, Prof. Tawatchai Tingsanchali led the project with his co-investigators, Prof. Mukand Babel and Prof. Sangam Shrestha of Water Engineering and Management Program (WEM) and team members. For the University of Exeter, the project was led by Prof. Slobodan Djordjevic. The same project was funded by the UK's Natural Environment Research Council (NERC). The National Research Council of Thailand accepted the 350-pages final report on March 31st, 2022.
The impacts of the combined climate variability, climate change, and land-use change on hydro-meteorological extremes in the Mun River Basin were studied, and adaptation measures are recommended to improve water security in the coming decades. The results of the project indicated that:
- In the future, there would be a decreased paddy field extent, replaced by other land uses such as field crops and perennial & orchards or forests.
- The magnitude and frequency of temperature extremes in the near future (next 30 years) will increase with increasing rainfall extremities (wet/dry).
- The average drought duration is expected to increase by more than 60%, while the drought severity can rise to 165% in the near future.
- The total income of rice, maize, cassava, and sugarcane production is mostly reduced by about 10-20% compared to the baseline.
- Case studies show that integrating existing rainfed with supplementary irrigation, increasing fertilizer, early planting of rice, and changing rice cultivar will increase rice yield.