The disaster relief situation in the Kingdom of Thailand and broadly across the world has been worsening greatly over time. With the existential threat of climate change, these disaster relief situations are getting more frequent and severe every year. In 2011 extreme flooding in Thailand lead to 815 confirmed deaths and an economic loss of more than 1.4 billion baht. Thailand and countries like it are being destroyed by climate change caused natural disasters, and the world seems only to care about the polluting countries’ large industry rather than human life. The UNDP has already recognized how vulnerable our coastal communities are to natural disasters and climate change, but the problem needs more than recognition. The economic impact is an estimated 3 trillion dollars spent on recovering from disasters from 1998 to 2017, and without fixing this problem the weaker economies of the world will continually falter without a safety net.
That is not to say that there have been no aid for Thailand and similar nations in the past. In fact, the UNDP and the Kingdom of Thailand have had an extremely beneficial relationship in the past with the project labeled “Strengthening Capacity to Address the Risks and Impacts of Climate Change and Extreme Weather Events in Thailand”. We have seen increased knowledge about climate change in our populous, a requirement for new land development to take natural disasters into account, and increased funding for our disaster preparedness unit. This has certainly helped with our immediate problems, but the problem still exists of larger more economically important countries being given a free pass to perpetuate the problems and the middle and low-income nations being forced to ask for global assistance just to stay above water.
While Thailand is extremely grateful for the UNDP’s assistance in our fight against natural disasters and climate change, we believe that the standards that were set during the program of “Strengthening Capacity to Address the Risks and Impacts of Climate Change and Extreme Weather Events in Thailand” should be applied to many more countries other than Thailand. They have been helpful in modernizing our infrastructure and ensuring that our citizens are protected from climate change, therefore, Thailand plans to introduce a resolution to apply the team that implemented those changes in our countries gradually world wide. There is a large issue that also needs addressing, however, which is polluting countries that are causing these problems in the first place. While the United Nations has been doing its utmost politically to end climate change, economically little has been done to influence these larger nations. The solution is to partner with the international monetary fund to provide incentives to nations that change their exports to countries with lower carbon emissions per capita. This would both incentivize larger countries to invest in smaller nations industry, but also incentivize less economically efficient countries to prioritize clean energy in industry. Eventually slowing the massive growth of natural disasters before they happen
Chaamjamal, By: “Climate Change Refugees.” Thongchai Thailand, 15 Aug. 2019, tambonthongchai.com/2018/10/29/climate-change-refugees/.
“Environment and Natural Resources.” Open Development Thailand, 19 Dec. 2017, thailand.opendevelopmentmekong.net/topics/environment-and-natural-resources/.
“Strengthening Capacity to Address the Risks and Impacts of Climate Change and Extreme Weather Events in Thailand: UNDP Climate Change Adaptation.” Climate Change Adaptation, UNDP, www.adaptation-undp.org/projects/sccf-extreme-weather-thailand.
- Jackson Bell