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Thailand Live Sunday 6 Nov 2011

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Thailand Live Sunday 6 November 2011

News, Bits and Tweets

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Keep up to date with live updates from the news, hour by hour.

For breaking news,national, regional and international news updates on a daily basis only, this thread is closed to commentary so that those who wish to follow the news can find it here...

Commentary is still open for Thailand news in the relevant thread posted in News Clippings.

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Related topic: Thailand Live Saturday 5 Nov 2011

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WELLNESS

Mudding the waters

Khetsirin Pholdhampalit

The Nation on Sunday

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More than 200 good-hearted folk turn out to a dharma centre each day to make EM mud balls

Baan Aree, a dharma sanctuary and wellness centre on Soi Aree 1 off Phaholyothin Road, is providing a much-needed boost for the spirits by inviting people to spend their time producing about 5,000 EM (effective micro-organism) mud balls every day to help disinfect contaminated floodwater.

The project, which was launched early last week, is drawing more than 200 volunteers of all ages each day, who work together mixing the ingredients and moulding the balls that are later distributed free to flood-affected people and institutions.

"The main problem of all flood-affected people is that the water is polluted and smells terrible. The EM balls are one of the environmental solutions to reduce water pollutants and improve water quality. Once thrown into the water, one EM ball can generally disinfect about five cubic metres of polluted water," says Suwit Chansirirat of Baan Aree.

Developed by University of Ryukyus professor Dr Teruo Higa, EM has a wide range of applications such as water and sewage purification, improving recycled water and solving sanitary problems. It is also widely used in agriculture, animal husbandry, fisheries and food production.

Microorganisms are crucial for maintaining the ecological balance. They carry out chemical processes that make it possible for all other organisms including humans to live. The fermentation emitted from the mud balls alleviates or destroys the ammonia nitrogen found in human effluents and sewerage leakages into the water system.

Each day, Baan Aree spends about Bt5,000 to buy the ingredients. The EM ball is made from fine and rough rice bran and sandy soil in a ratio of 3:2:2 before pouring in the liquid mixture containing EM activated solution and water to ensure it's not too wet or too dry.

The volunteers are divided into groups of five and each group has a plastic container containing the ingredients.

Volunteer Monthita Rojtinnakorn enthusiastically mixes the soil, liquid and rice brans together and compress them firmly in a small bowl before thoroughly kneading and forming the mixture into a tennis ball. To make sure the ball is compressed firmly and tightly enough, she is told to hold it by her knee then drop it on the floor.

"This is my first time here. The process of making EM balls is simple yet meaningful, everybody can do it. I wanted to do something meaningful. Before this, I'd volunteered to fill sandbags at Siriraj Hospital and Suvarnabhumi Airport and also packed relief bags at the Thai Red Cross. I've kept updated through Twitter and Facebook to see which venue requires volunteers," says the Chulalongkorn University student.

Once the balls are made, we are told not to leave them in direct sunlight. They must left in an open but shady area for five days. During fermentation, there will be white spots covering the mud balls: this is normal. The white spots are fungus, which is important for a successful ball that is ready to use. A ball under ideal conditions is effective for three months.

"Our problem right now is that the factory in Nong Chok district that supplies us with the ingredients has just been submerged by floodwaters. We are facing a shortage of supplies and what we have now is coming from donations. If anyone has a source where we can buy a large amount of rice bran, please call us," says Suwit.

"Another problem is we cannot produce enough balls to meet demand. Due to the shortage of supplies and our limited space, we can only produce about 5,000 balls a day. We also don't have a big enough space to dry all the balls we produce so the recipients need to dry them in the shade by themselves," he adds.

Kneading Needed

<< You can help make the EM balls at Baan Aree daily from 10am to 5pm. Donations of the ingredients to make the balls are also welcome.

<< Interested flood-affected people can ask for the EM balls by calling (02) 619 7474.

<< Baan Aree is on Soi Aree 1 off Phaholyothin Road (BTS: Aree). Visit www.BaanAree.net.

nationlogo.jpg

-- The Nation 2011-11-06

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Water-treatment powder distributed

The Nation on Sunday

The Pathum Thani Provincial Natural Resources and Environment Office yesterday gave 60,000 Dasta balls and 20,000 bottles of EM (effective micro-organisms) to Pathum Thani's administrators to be used for wastewater treatment in flooded areas of the province.

Soi Jai Ua up to the Chakri Bongkot Royal Residence will be the first flooded area in which the treatments will be used.

Meanwhile, the Flood Relief Operations Centre (FROC) is preparing to hand out 1 tonne of EM powder with the help of the Government Pharmaceutical Organisation (GPO) to be used in contaminated floodwaters. The GPO plans to produce another 5 tonnes of the powder.

Each of the packets under the GPO Klean brand contains 200 grams of the powder. FROC claims it is more effective than EM balls.

Centres will be set up to distribute the packages to Bangkokians.

nationlogo.jpg

-- The Nation 2011-11-06

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Parliamentary mobile kitchen

The Nation on Sunday

Parliament House Speaker Somsak Kiatsuranont yesterday presided over a ceremony to launch a mobile kitchen project put on by the Parliament. It will serve cooked food to people in flooded areas. The project was due to run from yesterday until November 24, kicking off in Bang Phlat district of Bangkok.

In related news, about 50 orphans aged between 3 and 13 at an orphanage in Angthong were rushed to Pamok Hospital after suffering from diarrhoea and vomiting after eating canned spicy fish salad.

Thirty of them with severe symptoms were admitted to the hospital.

nationlogo.jpg

-- The Nation 2011-11-06

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Courts, offices closed for week

The Nation on Sunday

The Courts of Justice yesterday declared tomorrowNovember 7 through FridayNovember 11 as special holidays due to the floods.

The holidays will be in effect for the Ratchadapisek Court, the Government Complex on Chaeng Wattana Road, the Taling Chan Provincial Court, the Office of the Chief Judge Of Region 1, the Pathum Thani Court and the Office of the Courts of Justice.

nationlogo.jpg

-- The Nation 2011-11-06

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Boat-transport firm extends service suspension

The Nation on Sunday

Chao Phraya Express Boat Co Ltd yesterday extended the suspension of its services until November 14.

The company earlier announced its boat transport service would be halted until November 7. By the new date, the suspension will have lasted three weeks, costing the firm an estimated Bt10 million in income. The company assisted the Royal Thai Navy's evacuation of Siriraj Hospital patients to Klong Toei Port and the Royal Thai Naval Academy in Samut Prakan.

In related news, Transport Co Ltd yesterday said its bus service would remain open at the Mor Chit2 Bus Terminal unless the flood water rose to 50cm.

nationlogo.jpg

-- The Nation 2011-11-06

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Migrant labourers relocated

The Nation on Sunday

The Labour Ministry yesterday moved 500 migrant labourers from Nakhon Pathom’s Wat Rai Khing shelter to Ratchaburi’s Institute for Skill Development Region 4, as the temple shelter was flooded.

The workers, who boarded 15 buses provided by the Bangkok Mass Transit Authority, were Cambodian and Burmese, including Karen and Shan people. There are now more than 3,000 people taking refuge in Ratchaburi's 27 shelters.

nationlogo.jpg

-- The Nation 2011-11-06

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6:24am water at Kaset int is about 90cm-hi. A report of 4 crocodiles escape from fisheries dpt of Kaset univ.~@fm91trafficpro/via@Tulip_Oum

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