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Climate Change impacts in Krabi Province, Thailand

The study’s principal goals were to build capacity for adaptation options that build climate change resilient systems, and to integrate climate risk management into development strategies. The study aimed to improve current knowledge about climate change and its potential impacts on local people’s lives, natural resources and the ecosystem services they provide.

Funding source: WWF Thailand Programme
Principal investigator: Assistant Professor Dr. Anond Snidvongs
Partners: WWF Thailand Programme
Researchers: Suppakorn Chinavanno,Jariya Thitiwate,Tosapon Ketwut,Kulpitar Phruksawan,Wirote Laongmanee,Chanchai Yangdee,Jennara Tuatikulchai,Suratta Boonsomboonsakul,Chalermrat Sangmanee
Timeframe: March2008-31May2008
Period: 3 months
Status: Completed

The study’s principal goals were to build capacity for adaptation options that build climate change resilient systems, and to integrate climate risk management into development strategies. The study aimed to improve current knowledge about climate change and its potential impacts on local people’s lives, natural resources and the ecosystem services they provide. The specific objectives of the study were to:

  • Develop scenarios that identify likely impacts of climate change on key economic sectors in Krabi in 10 and 25 years time;
  • Suggest specific recommendations for both policy and institutional change (economic and environmental); and
  • Engage local stakeholders in the assessment process.


The study team assembled data from a number of government sources and mapped it using GIS for the province’s upland, coastal and urban areas. Climate scenarios for next 10 and 25 years in the future were simulated with the Max Planck Institute’s ECHAM global circulation model (GCM). The scenarios were based on IPCC projections (A2 scenario) of greenhouse gas emissions (and other global change drivers). The Hadley Centre’s PRECIS model was used to increase the resolution of the GCM’s output to 25*25 km2 so that results would be meaningful for Krabi province. The mean and variability of monsoon, temperature, precipitation, and prevailing winds were analyzed for the present and two future periods. Estimates of mean sea level and tropical storms were incorporated from the model outputs and from extrapolation of trends. The study team also reviewed provincial planning documents and interviewed a cross-section of stakeholders in Krabi’s upland, coastal and urban zones to gauge their awareness of climate changes and their vulnerability. In addition, 130 local, regional and national officials, business and NGO leaders, scientists and local people participated in a workshop, which was broadcast nationally on Thai public TV. Participants discussed the report’s findings and their implications for the Province’s development path.

The study found that:

  1. Coastal communities are especially vulnerable to climate change impacts due to their proximity to the sea, their fisheries-dependent livelihoods and limited agricultural land. They are of significant social and cultural value as they are among the last communities in Krabi characterized by a traditional lifestyle. At the stakeholder workshop, several villagers noted that they’d already lost land and asked for assistance in dealing with coastal erosion.
  2. Upland Area,In contrast to the coastal communities, the study’s results suggest that upland communities will be less vulnerable to climate change. Although rainfall will decrease during this period, it will remain sufficient to meet the needs of rubber cultivation, and the shorter monsoon season will permit additional days of tapping. Reduced rainfall, on the other hand, may reduce the productivity of oil palms. This provides another incentive to Krabi smallholders, already vulnerable to abrupt income swings traceable to market conditions, to diversify their crop base so as to increase resilience to economic and climate changes.
  3. Urban Area,A lengthening dry season will increase the demand for tourism services, and hence place additional burdens on coastal resources and key ecosystems. Urban zones are likely to face water scarcity during the dry season, in response to which basin-wide water management systems will be essential. Provincial planners should engage stakeholders in a discussion of the province’s capacity for tourism growth that takes into account near and long-term climate change impacts; the best strategy may be to cap or slow growth in visitor volume while emphasizing migration to higher value and ‘greener’ services for tourists.


In addition, the study gave the holistic view on climate change impact, risk for policy maker which each sectors have to response to difference impacts.

Activities: “Impact of future climate change on resources , economics sectors and coastal community in Krabi province”. A workshop was conducted at the Pakasai Provincial Conference Hall in Krabi on 9th June 2008.

Gallery


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Change in annual rainfall in Krabi province: comparison between present time and 10 and 25 years in the future.

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Areas with high risks for coastal instability due to sea level rise

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Potential impact of sea level change and coastline destabilizing in Krabi province

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Potential impact of sea level change and shallow aquifer wells salinity contamination in Krabi province

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Field Trip to study areas

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Area with coastal erosion problem

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The stakeholder consultation workshop was conducted at the provincial conference hall on 9th June 2008

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