Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu Chi Foundation

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Jul 23rd
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Saving the Coast by Planting More Plants

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The rising of sea level resulted from global warming is threatening Bangkok, Thailand. To rescue its coastline from receding, Tzu Chi volunteers of the Thailand Chapter earnestly devoted themselves to grow kandelia candels twice a month with the villagers who lived near the coast.

During the rainy seasons, the north of Bangkok will become submerged by water; the coastline is decreased by the rising sea level and the land of the village is totally inundated. With a map in his hand, the helpless village head of a Thailand coastal village said, “This black imprint was once pillars used for blocking out the waves, but the seawater was too turbulent to block. When I was a boy, houses and temples were located near the pillars, but now it’s all covered by seawater. ” As the coastline gradually moving inward, inhabitants were forced to migrate to elsewhere, leaving their homeland where only wire polls and pagoda tips could be seen. The muddy region became the paradise of mudskippers and fiddler crabs.

Jian-Zhong Lee, the Vice CEO of Tzu Chi’s Thailand Chapter, indicated that, “If seawater flows inland from the gap of this community, Bangkok might be completely flooded in twenty years.”

With walls and door planks full of water imprints, the golden coating on the Buddha statue has also partially mottled off. Following the residents’ footsteps, our investigation found that the gapping area along the coast was as wide as 90,000 square feet. To save the coastal region, it takes more people’s effort to plant more kandelia candels.

Lee also mentioned that the planting activities which are held twice per month are not only meant to save the endangered land in Bangkok but also in a hope of protecting the Mother Earth and localize Tzu Chi’s care at the same time.

Taking a broad view, the panorama is an area of yellowish water. Tzu Chi volunteers could identify with the pain of losing homelands. Living in the global village that makes us one big family. Tzu Chi Foundation will fully wield its influence to prevent Bangkok from becoming a water-flooded city.

Reported by: Kun Da and Qiu-Ling Cai from Thailand
Translated by: James Wang, Mendy Heung, Lucy Lee