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Community Adaptation Initiatives in Chiang Rai Province, Thailand
Location: Chiang Rai, Thailand
Implementing Partner: IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature), Thailand

USAID Mekong ARCC is working through IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature), Thailand in Chiang Rai, the northernmost province of Thailand. IUCN Thailand is assisting three villages—Ban Loh Yo, Ban Hae Ko, and Ban Huai Kang Pla—in Mae Chan District in strengthening the resilience to climate change of selected agriculture, non-timber forest products (NTFPs), and animal husbandry livelihood activities. IUCN is also assisting communities to restore and rehabilitate the integrity of forest and wetland ecosystems that serve as a natural buffer against climate change impacts associated with projected increases in temperature and annual precipitation.

Site Information

Ban Loh Yo, Ban Hae Ko, and Ban Huai Kang Pla are connected through the Mae Chan watershed, a sub-basin of the Mae Kok River Basin. Located in western Pa Tueng Sub-District approximately 50 km from Chiang Rai City, Ban Loh Yo is inhabited by the ethnic minority Akha hill tribe people and comprises 60 households and 600 individuals. Ban Hae Ko is inhabited by an ethnic Lisu hill tribe community and is made up of 49 households and 282 individuals. Ban Huai Kang Pla is situated in the lower reaches of the watershed in the east of Pa Tueng Sub-District and contains 326 households and 2,177 individuals. (View site map)

Analysis of Climate Impacts from USAID Mekong ARCC’s Lower Mekong Basin Climate Study

  • Annual rainfall will increase from 1,600 mm/year to 1,740 mm/year (+140 mm/yr); December will see a 50% increase in monthly rainfall, while February will see a -25% reduction. Percentage change in precipitation will be higher in the south.
  • Under baseline conditions daily maximum temperatures peak in April and average 34.7°C. With climate change, maximum temperature will increase by 2.0°C.
  • Large rainfall events (>100 mm/day) will occur twice as often, (once every 12 years as opposed to once every 25 years under baseline conditions), resulting in an increase in flash flooding.

Projected Climate Vulnerabilities on Key Livelihood and Food Security Options in Chiang Rai Province

  • Temperatures exceeding 35°C during October delays ripening and reduces number and quality of grains. 
  • Increases of minimum temperatures during December flowering decreases lychee tree yields.
  • Added heat stress reduces reproduction and immunity of chickens and pigs.
  • Flood events impact reproduction and reduce habitat suitability of certain fish species.
  • Flash floods impact young seedlings of NTFPs and crop wild species.

Community Identified Adaptation Activities for Communities in Chiang Rai Province

  • Improved water quality and community health through introduction of water filtration system;
  • Diversification of vegetable, fruit and commercial crops (e.g. Assam tea) to build income resilience by reducing reliance on monoculture, increasing food security and reducing soil erosion;
  • Training on integrated farming and improved forest, land and water management techniques;
  • Improved fish pond construction and identification of species stocks that are more climate resilient;
  • Improved forest and NTFP management through creation of forest management committees; and
  • Provision of more heat resilient native black pigs, and technical assistance on livestock rearing and improved pig pen design and construction to prepare for changes in climate that will impact productivity of local breeds.

Additional Stakeholder Engagement

  • Sub-district Administration Organization (TAO) of Pa Tueng
  • Provincial Administrative Organization
  • Chiang Rai Land Development Station
  • Highland Research and Development Institute
  • Royal Project Foundation
  • Internal Security Operations Command (ISOC)
  • Hill Area Development Foundation
  • Huai Hongkhrai Royal Development Study Center
  • Mae Fah Luang Foundation
  • Chiang Mai University
  • Forest Restoration Research Unit


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Last update: 15.05.2015