Central cares for the environment with “Saplings to Forest” Supporting “Planting forest in people’s hearts His Majesty the King’s way”in
Deputy Bangkok Governor Thaweesak Lertprapan presided over the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Plook Pah Por Peang Foundation and Central Group in the activity, “Saplings to Forest”. The Foundation’s Chairman Kriangpol Pattanarat, the Bangkok Governor’s Secretary, signed the MoU with Central Group Executive Director Pichai Chirathivat, which was witnessed by Central Group’s Senior Director Ms. Somkamol Chirathivat and Senior Vice President Dr Chartchai Norasethaporn. The party then threshed olive mangrove seed to release it into the growing plot, and planted large–leaved mangrove seedlings on a stand of 13 rai at the Bangkok Seaview of mangrove forest in Bangkhunthien District of Bangkok.
Deputy Governor Thaweesak noted that Central Group’s “Saplings to Forest” activity to support the BMA’s project “Planting
forest in people’s hearts His Majest the King’s way” was addressing the concerns of His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej on the prevention and solution of coastal erosion and making mangrove forests more vigourous. This will revive the ecosystem, including the spawning grounds and nurseries of many marine species. It will also improve the landscape to promote eco–tourism. Central Group supported the planting of large–leaved mangroves on 13 rai with a donation of 3.12 million baht, as well as giving 100 motorcycle helmets for the safety of local riders, in support of this forestation project.
Pichai Chirathivat commented, “This “Saplings to Forest” activity was accomplished with the cooperation of over 250 Central Group managers, staff and network partners, all joining in to plant forest on an area of 13 rai for a period of 3 years. The plan is to plant 10,400 large-leaved mangrove trees with continual follow-ups every 3-6 months. Besides the effort to plant large-leaved mangroves, there is also the activity of threshing olive mangrove seed, planting saplings and tidying up trash from the mangrove forest areas.”
The Sea of Bangkok is currently facing problems of erosion in Bangkhunthien District on the Gulf of Thailand from strong waves and ocean currents, which have eroded the shoreline for a length of 5.2 kilometers, losing a total soil area of over 3,000 rai. Residents of this area were obliged to move 2 kilometers inland from the original Bangkok demarcation post. Coastal erosion in Thailand is a very severe and extensive problem with over 100,000 rai lost to the sea, a land value of around 100 billion baht. This has damaged the mangrove ecosystem, a feeding and nursery area of aquatic animals. Mangroves are the habitat of up to 74 separate species.
If we lose the mangrove forest, these marine animals will be lost with them, impacting both the conditions of the area and the livings of many people living there. In the past, this problem has not been seriously addressed, and has been allowed to become more intense every year. The Bangkok Metropolitan Authority (BMA) thus decided to implement sustainable solutions with the cooperation of the state sector, state enterprises, the private sector and the general public. Each is a party in the network to revive and conserve the Sea of Bangkok for future generations.