“… The priority is to ensure sufficient water supplies for consumption and agriculture
because people live there. Water gives life to human.
Without water, men cannot survive. Human can survive without electricity.
However, if there is just electricity, but no water left, human cannot survive. …”
Royal speech of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej given at Chitralada Royal Villa on March 17, 1986
Over 70 years of his reign, His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej initiated countless projects for the benefit of his people. Among those were water resource management projects. His Majesty’s recognition of the significance of water are seen in the remark “Water is life” and resulted in the conception of various water resource development and management projects. With these tremendous efforts, he was designated “the Father of Water Resource Management.”
To honor the immeasurable benevolence of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej, SCG has adopted His Majesty’s sustainable water management initiatives and put them to practice through a check dam construction project titled “SCG Conserving Water for Tomorrow.” This project first began in Lampang in 2007 and was later expanded to other provinces, namely Chiang Mai, Phrae, Nan, Rayong, Kanchanaburi, Ratchaburi, Saraburi, Khon Kaen, and Nakhon Ratchasima. Currently, the network comprises over 80 communities across 12 provinces nationwide and has built 68,000 check dams in total.
The check dam construction in the SCG Conserving Water for Tomorrow Project in Rayong began in 2007 with an aim to solve drought and restore balance to the ecology of Khao Yaida in Muang District, Rayong. Encompassing six sub-districts, namely Taphong, Klaeng, Phe, Samnakthong, Natakhwan, and Ban Lang, the locations are ones of Rayong’s key agricultural and agro-tourism areas. In 1989-2006, Khao Yaida area was plagued with forest degradation, recurring wildfires, and water scarcity. Therefore, governmental agencies and local residents joined hands to solve the problems and revitalize the area by executing various counter measures, one of which was to construct check dams. Upon receiving a request for technical and financial support, SCG Chemicals took on the project and has since built a total of over 5,500 check dams in Rayong. Over the past ten years, these check dams have restored lushness to Khao Yaida and put an end to aridity and wildfires. This has not only improved the economy of the communities and given them stable access to water and all-year productivity, but also led to environmental consciousness among local residents, forest and water resource protection efforts, love and appreciation for their hometowns, and ultimately the sustainable development of the communities and society.
To demonstrate its commitment to continuing His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej’s aspirations, SCG organized “Constructing 70,000 Check Dams to Carry on His Majesty’s Water Conservation Initiatives” in association with local communities and SCG Conserving Water for Tomorrow network to carry on His Majesty’s initiatives and construct 2,000 more check dams to achieve a total of 70,000 check dams across the country. The activity was carried out simultaneously in six provinces in all regions of Thailand, namely Kanchanaburi (200 check dams), Saraburi (150 check dams), Lampang (1,300 check dams), Nakhon Si Thammarat (100 check dams), Khon Kaen (100 check dams), and Rayong (150 check dams)
In Rayong, the “Constructing 70,000 Check Dams to Carry on His Majesty’s Water Conservation Initiatives” project was held at Huay Din Dad, Taphong Sub-district, Muang District in collaboration with SCG’s business partners, distributors, governmental agencies, SCG Conserving Water for Tomorrow network, relevant associations, vocational students, and local volunteers. Mr. Somchai Wangwattanapanich, Vice President – Operations, SCG Chemicals, said that SCG Chemicals was proud to be part of creating inspiration for people to continue the water conservation initiatives of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej, which promote self-reliance and sustainability in communities. The check dam construction activity was only an example that demonstrates SCG Chemicals’ commitment to promoting participation from every sector. This was rooted in the belief that every project requires cooperation to succeed. Somchai also concluded his remark by inviting everyone to join the company’s benevolent projects in the future.
“Everyone comes here with a heart full of contentment and determination to honor His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej. I can see that everyone shares the conviction not only to construct more check dams, but also to join hands with the communities in maintaining the ones we have installed over the past ten years. We will built over 5,500 check dams, and we will protect and pass them on to posterity as treasures of the communities and as learning centers for other communities in the vicinity so that they can adopt this effective check dam construction method and apply it to their own location to improve their quality of life. I would like to invite all public and private organizations to join our future beneficial activities such as this and continue the aspirations of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej. We are already constantly extending our invitation to general education institutes, private organizations, and governmental agencies with the intention to make contributions to society. We will continue and intensify our efforts to conserve water for the future and bring the benefits of these initiatives to other communities.”
His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyedej’ s initiatives have made a genuine difference to the lives of his people and the nation. The check dam construction is only one such initiative. In fact, SCG Chemicals is determined to continue its current efforts and organize more activities and projects to carry on his aspirations in other areas in the future.
Opinions of participants of “Constructing 70,000 Check Dams to Carry on His Majesty’s Water Conservation Initiatives”
Mr. Nimit Sakulpong, Village Headman of Moo 14, Taphong Sub-district, Muang District, Rayong
“At first, I didn’t think that check dams could really help. But, as time goes by, they have proven to be effective. The results are now evident. The hill and farm areas are lush and abundant. Most local residents are farmers who grow rubber tree plantations and orchards of rambutan and durian. If we keep building more dams each year, our efforts will ultimately pay off tremendously. I am glad to have followed his footsteps. My contribution may be minute, but if we come together and join hands, our collective efforts will result in great power, fulfilling His Majesty’s wish to see us unite and protect the environment, especially the watershed forest and its vicinity in our project. This is one of His Majesty’s concerns.
Mr. Pratchya Kruekaew, first-year vocational student at Map Ta Phut Technical College, Rayong
“I am glad to have been carried on His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej’s initiative by taking part of this check dam construction. I believe that we can continue His Majesty’s initiatives in many ways. Building check dams is not too challenging. In addition, it helps restore ecological systems and protect our forests.”