Urgent meeting on Monday over seawater intrusion into Chao Phraya River
The Office of National Water Resources will hold an urgent meeting on Monday, with the Metropolitan Waterworks Authority (MWA) and related agencies, to address the intrusion of seawater into the Chao Phraya River. The influx is threatening the production of tap water for consumers in Bangkok and its suburbs.
Drought, compounded by high tides, have driven sea water deeper into the Chao Phraya, causing tap water in some parts of Bangkok and its surrounding areas to taste salty, although the MWA has assured that the water is safe and does not yet pose a threat to health.
Mr. Somkiat Prajamwong, secretary-general of the Office of National Water Resources, said he expects the meeting tomorrow to develop a plan to deal with the problem.
The salinity of water from the estuary of the Chao Phraya River up to Samlae station in Pathum Thani, and water from the Tha Chine and Bang Pakong rivers, is being closely monitored. Water in the Mae Klong and Phetchaburi rivers is still normal.
Deputy Interior Minister Nipon Boonyamanee said he has instructed the Centre for the Prevention and Mitigation of Public Disasters and provincial administrations to look for new water sources for the production of tap water during the dry season.
He admitted that tap water may taste a little salty, because the MWA has to produce tap water continuously to meet the demand adding, however, that reverse osmosis (RO) water treatment machines will be installed at 10 MWA locations to produce additional tap water.