Mekong water level still low in Nakhon Phanom

Mekong water level still low in Nakhon Phanom

The Mekong River in Nakhon Phanom. (Photo: Pattanapong Sripiachai)
The Mekong River in Nakhon Phanom. (Photo: Pattanapong Sripiachai)

NAKHON PHANOM: The water level in the Mekong river between Thailand and Laos in this northeastern province is still low and the river can still absorb much higher inflows, the provincial disaster prevention and mitigation office announced on Sunday.

On Sunday morning, the water level dropped to only 4 metres high -- the lowest in five years during October. This part of the country has seen much lower rainfall than in past years. 

The Mekong water level passing Nakhon Phanom was 8 metres below the spilling point on the river bank, leaving plenty of room for more. 

The Mekong river's tributaries -- Nam Kam, Nam Oun and Nam Songkhram streams -- are now only at 20-30% of their capacities.

Therefore, the provincial disaster prevention and mitigation office is confident that even if there were more storms and downpours, the Mekong and its tributaries would take all the water without problems.

The office's concern is that there might not be sufficient water for use in the forthcoming dry season.

Meanwhile, the Royal Irrigation Department's office in Sakon Nakhon province nearby has stopped discharging water from the Nong Han Lake along the 120-kilometre-long Nam Kam stream into the Mekong river to keep water for agriculture in the dry season.

The entire Nam Kam stream has the capacity to hold up to 50 million cubic metres of water for about 60,000 rai of farmland on both sides.

The office has warned farmers not to cultivate their crops outside irrigated zones for fear of drought.

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