Improving reservoir water quality management in Thailand

In February 2024, the Thailand Royal Irrigation Department (RID) facilitated a workshop in Nakhon Si Thammarat as part of a continuing project supported by AWP and Australian partners, led by Griffith University.

The workshop provided an opportunity for Australian and Thai experts to collaborate and exchange ideas on improving water quality monitoring, irrigation best practice and stakeholder engagement in the irrigation sector, working towards the development of tools for RID which will have a significant positive social, economic and environmental impact in Thailand. 

The second phase of the project has seen an advancement in water quality monitoring with Adjunct Associate Professor Kelvin O’Halloran, Griffith University and experts from Chulalongkorn University cooperating to undertake sampling and analysis of RID’s 25 large reservoirs. During the workshop sampling and sample preparation was demonstrated to over 300 RID personnel across more than 20 regions in Thailand, emphasising the importance of eutrophication intervention.

Further development of Gender Equality, Disability and Social Inclusion (GEDSI) guidelines were advanced by the cooperation of Griffith University and Ubon Ratchathani University with the aim to improve and encourage conducting socially inclusive meetings with stakeholders affected by RID activities in the community. 

Presentations on aquatic weed management from Matthew Purcell, CSIRO and irrigation best practice by Colin Bendell, Sunwater were highlights, furthering project activities in progress since 2022.

Sampling at Lam Pao Dam, Lam Khlong. (Credit: Griffith University) 

“This workshop was a broader and more comprehensive exchange of knowledge between Australia and Thailand. A balanced contribution from Australia and Thailand has resulted in a successful workshop with a combination of presentations and off-site demonstrations and sampling,” said Project Lead Adjunct Associate Professor Kelvin O’Halloran.  

The conclusion of the second phase of the project has seen the successful implementation of key tools to move forward with improvement of reservoir water quality management in Thailand.

Featured image: Thailand Royal Irrigation Department and Australian Experts at the February Workshop. (Credit: Griffith University)

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