Vanishing beach | Bangkok Post: learning

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Vanishing beach

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Experts say Pattaya Beach may disappear within five years unless action is taken to save it. 

Pattaya Beach is facing a severe sand erosion problem, prompting business owners to stack sandbags around their deckchairs to keep them from being washed away by waves. The erosion has significantly reduced the beach area over the past 10 years, experts say.


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Vanishing beach

Way back in 1952 before the tourist era, Pattaya Beach covered 96,000 square metres (about 60 rai) with the distance to the water about 36 metres. Not surprisingly, with the massive development that occurred, the beach area had fallen to 50,500 square metres (31 rai) by 2002, with 18.7 metres to the shoreline.

What has happened since then is a bit of a shock.  The latest survey found the beach width had dropped sharply to just four to five metres.

Professor Thanawat Jarupongsakul, a Chulalongkorn University researcher, says sand erosion could cause Pattaya Beach to vanish altogether.

The problem is so severe business owners are being forced to stack sandbags around their deckchairs to keep them from being washed away by waves.

Prof Thanawat says the erosion is caused mainly by changes in wave patterns reducing deposits of sand on the beach and this is being exacerbated by increased beach use.

"Without serious action, Pattaya Beach will disappear within five years," he says.

Prof Thanawat said Chulalongkorn University's Aquatic Resources Research Institute, its science faculty and the Marine Department of the Transport Ministry had together prepared a plan to counter the erosion.

This involves 200,000 cubic metres of sand being filled along the 4.48 kilometres of the beach to expand its width to 30 metres.

Adapted from a story in yesterday’s Bangkok Post

severe – very serious and worrying ที่รุนแรง ที่น่าเป็นห่วง
erosion – gradually destroying the surface of something through the action of wind, rain, etc; to be gradually destroyed in this way การกัดกร่อน,การเซาะ
prompt – to cause something to happen or be done ก่อให้เกิด
stack – to put things on top of each other in an ordered pile วางตั้งซ้อนกัน, กองซ้อนกัน
wave – a raised line of water that moves across the surface of the sea, ocean, etc คลื่น
vanish – to disappear or stop being present or existing, especially in a sudden, surprising way  หายไป
era – a period of time that has a particular quality or character ยุค, สมัย
massive - very large in size, amount or numberใหญ่โต
development – the process of using an area of land, especially to make a profit by building on it, etc การพัฒนา    
shoreline – the edge of the sea, the ocean, or lake, large river  แนวชายฝั่ง
shock – a strong feeling of surprise as a result of something happening, especially something unpleasant; the event that causes this feeling ช็อค, ความสะดุ้ง, อาการช็อค
width – the distance across something from one side to the other ความกว้าง
sharply – suddenly and by a large amount อย่างเร็ว
pattern – a series of actions or events that together show how things normally happen or are done
reduce – to make something smaller or less in amount, size, importance etc ลดลง
deposit – a layer which has formed under the ground, especially over a long period สิ่งที่สะสม
exacerbate – to make something worse ทำให้แย่ลง
aquatic – growing or living in or near water เกี่ยวกับน้ำ
faculty – a group of departments in a college which specialize in a particular subject or group of subjects คณะ
marine – relating to the sea and creatures that live in it เกี่ยวกับทะเล
counter – to take action to oppose or stop something ต่อต้าน
expand – to become larger  ขายตัวออกไป

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