11 July 2024

Fifteen wildlife conservation organizations will march to the Government House next Monday to petition Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha to put on hold the Kaeng Krachan national park’s plan to asphalt the road to Khao Panern Thung, a popular mountain-top tourist attraction in the southern province of Phetchaburi.

Earlier, 15 environment groups sent a letter to the minister of natural resources and environment voicing their opposition to major repairs of the only earthen road to Khao Panern Thung, claiming that the improved road put the safety of rare wildlife species such as tiger and mountain goat at risk of getting killed in road accidents.

The groups claimed that as many as 3,000 wild animals were killed each year by cars after a road was cut right through the Ang Runai wildlife sanctuary in Rayong province.

The Kaeng Krachan national park on Thursday closed down a 15-km section of the road from Ban Krang camp site to Khao Panern Thung for major road repairs which will take about 560 days.  The camp site, however, remains open to visitors.

Mr Kaset Sutaecha, a committee member of the Birds and Nature Conservation Association, said Kaeng Krachan forest had been included in an initial list to be declared as a world’s natural heritage since 2011.

Paving the road access with asphalt may impact on the world’s heritage characteristic of the forest there, he noted.