07.11.2011 - Natural Sciences Sector

UNESCO-IHE supports flood crisis mitigation team in Bangkok

The UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education, in the capacity of Dr. Zoran Vojinovic, Associate Professor of Informatics, is supporting Bangkok city authorities in their efforts to mitigate the floods that are currently causing a major crisis in the Thai capital. He is working closely with the managers of the Bangkok Metropolitan Authority, the Royal Irrigation Authority, and experts of the Hydro and Agro Informatics Institute Bangkok (HAII) and Deltares. The expert team, together with the managers, is implementing a real-time systems operation of infrastructure for flood mitigation.

Dr. Vojinovic was mainly working with HAII, as the Institute is directly engaged by the Minister of Science. The Professor was asked to give a keynote speech concerning flood risk mitigation at the Pacific Neighborhood Consortium (PNC) conference where HRH Princess Bajrakitiyabha Mahidol was also present.

The country also faces grave economic losses in business and agriculture as a result of the flood crisis. Other Southeast Asian countries have suffered serious flooding in recent weeks because of heavy monsoon rains combined with tropical storms.

About 342* people have died since late July in flood-related incidents, the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation in Thailand said. According to Reuters news agency some 2.3 million people have been affected in the worst flooding to hit parts of Thailand in 50 years, mainly in the centre, north and northeast.

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* Updated figures from United Nations Thailand: 594 death as of 18 November 2011

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