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Rain-making strategy to be adjusted in April to coincide with change in weather

The Agriculture Ministry will adjust its rain-making strategy in April by shifting its focus on drought-stricken areas and on replenishing drying dams, said Agriculture Minister Chatchai Sarikalya on Wednesday.

rain makingCiting forecast of the Meteorological Department that there is a prospect of widespread covering most of the country in April, he said that the adjusting of the rain-making strategy could have a 10-20 percent chance of cloud seeding and rains.

He said that during March 5-25, a total of 105 rain-making flights were launched resulting to rains in 21 provinces covering 6.8 million rai of land and 15.8 million cubic metres of water flowing into dams.

Meanwhile, Royal Irrigation Department chief Suthep Noypairote said that the salt level at Samlae in the Chao Phraya river in Pathum Thani which was the source of tap water for Bangkok and peripherals increased to 0.5 gramme/litre from 0.25 gramme/litre due to the invasion of sea water as a result of the southeastern wind.

The increased salt content in the water has prompted the department to discharge more water downstream from dam at a rate of 110 cubic metres/second.

The salt content has dropped to 0.25 gramme/litre as measured on Wednesday, said Mr Suthep, adding that another period of high tide is due on April 8-9 but the water in the Chao Phraya river will be safe for tap water.

Mr Lersak Riewtrakul, director-general of Rain-making and Agriculture Aviation Department, disclosed that there are only four million cubic metres of water left in the Ubonrat dam or only one percent of its full capacity.

Thai PBS



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