Chamniern Paul Vorratnchaiphan – who is also the Rockefeller Foundation’s Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network (ACCCRN) project director for TEI – made the comments at a one-day ACCCRN seminar organized by the TEI and chaired by Vice Governor Nivit Aroonrat at the Phuket Merlin Hotel.
The event was attended by 80 people representing various organizations, including the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation and Phuket City Municipality.
The seminar was held to assess the current and potential environmental problems Phuket faces regarding climate change by fielding input from a wide range of experts, officials and local people.
As part of the ACCCRN, the TEI hopes to formulate and implement a plan of action to prevent the demise of the island, Mr Chamniern said.
The outlook was grim as speakers voiced concern after concern over current development trends and the risks they pose to Phuket’s environment.
“Phuket is like the Titanic cruise ship, which tried to get to America too quickly and hit an iceberg instead before reaching its destination,” Mr Chamniern said.
For a closer look at the environmental challenges Phuket faces, and the TEI and ACCCRN proposed strategies to dealing with them, pick up a copy of next week’s Phuket Gazette, on newsstands from October 16.
— Atchaa Khamlo
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