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Air Pollution

Celebrities take to social media and point out Government incompetence over air pollution problem

Tanutam Thawan

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PHOTO: More people than not now walk around the city wearing face masks, most of them useless - Travel Daily Media

“Thai PM Prayut Chan-o-cha said it’s hard to enforce laws to reduce PM2.5 pollution and blamed the public for the poor air quality.”

Thai celebrities have taken to social media in a campaign to show the incompetence of public authorities and the Thai government in handling Bangkok’s pollution problem, indeed the entire central and northern Thailand which is currently suffering air quality problems. Whilst the litany of clear evidence of what is causing the smoke and haze isn’t getting any attention from authorities, social media is now making it abundantly clear and demanding urgent attention.

So some Thai celebrities are joining residents in Bangkok and the suburbs to accuse the Government of being “complacent and incompetent” in its approach to solving the worsening PM2.5 dust pollution that is clouding the skies.

Well known singer Lydia Sarunrat posted pics of her bloodshot eyes on her Instagram account yesterday, showing her irritated her eyes after just 15 minutes riding a motorcycle through the smog in Bangkok.

She explained that she’d been wearing an appropriate face mask, but it didn’t help.

Bangkok authorities have famously blamed everything from the traffic pollution and even asked people to stop burning incense sticks. They created big media photo opportunities showing their flashy water cannons and even an army of drones spraying a few litres of water through the air. All of this has done approximately NOTHING to address the problem, the elephant in the room. And the elephant, in this case, is the clear and obvious plantation fires around central and northern Thailand with the smoke blowing across the land and polluting the skies. Without enough wind or rain to blow the smoke away, it just hangs around and causes a health hazard.

The fires are mostly lit by farmers burning off their sugar cane to prepare for a new harvest because it’s the cheapest way to prepare their paddocks.

Meanwhile, Thai PM Prayut Chan-o-cha said it’s hard to enforce laws to reduce PM2.5 pollution and blamed the public for the poor air quality.

“The public is responsible and a culprit in the PM2.5 problem. Yet we cannot simply put the blame on people and penalise all the polluters because the outcome of penalty measures will create other serious problems for society. We need to rely on asking for cooperation.”

The Thammasat University Student Organisation issued a statement condemning the Thai Government’s apparent complacency over the deteriorating dust problem.

Many other celebrities have posted the evidence of the fires from Air Visual and other air pollution apps. As well as data from NASA which clearly shows the fires and the spread of the smoke. The evidence should be clear to anyone, except the city authorities and pollution control departments who appear to be unable to read the information and fiddle while Bangkok chokes.

Former Ms. Thailand World 2014, Meya Nonthawan, said she visited a hospital two days after her return to Bangkok from an overseas trip.

“I am now resting at home with an air purifier working.”

Rapper Apisit Joeyboy Opasaimilikit asked, in his Facebook post, “I wonder why no one is worried? Are those responsible not worried about us? It is understandable that the pollution comes at this time of the year and then goes away, but no apparent action is being taken at this critical time.”

Actress Atthama “Bowie” Chivanichapan’s Instagram page shows her wearing a face mask. She says she felt an irritation in her throat after going outdoors.

A Facebook post by “Infectious” reported the children are cluttering up hospitals, suffering respiratory problems, flu, coughing, red eyes, allergies, runny noses and asthma.

‘Narisara Student’ said, on her Facebook page, that she blames PM2.5 dust and pollution for her dog’s respiratory health problems.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

Celebrities take to social media and point out Government incompetence over air pollution problem | News by Thaiger

GRAPHIC: The pollution levels and the actual fires. There they are, on a map… HELLO!?! – Air Visual

 

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