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Bangkok smog: Diesel buses and vehicles key problem

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Bangkok smog: Diesel buses and vehicles key problem | The Thaiger

by Wichit Chaitrong

“The problem is the estimated 2.5 million diesel-powered trucks and buses still on city roads.”

Experts are saying this morning that, given the problems in recent weeks with Bangkok’s smog, the national government’s pursuit of a “low-carbon economy” has fallen short of needs. They are recommending higher taxes on “dirty fuel” and a reduction in the number of vehicles on city streets.

Like other countries, Thailand has incorporated the low-carbon economy model in policies, aiming for sustainable development and better public health. But, in reality, the necessary changes have not taken effect.

The Finance Ministry has already introduced excise taxes on vehicles that vary with emission levels and successive governments have endorsed railway projects such as the mass transit system in Bangkok. The Energy Ministry plans to use more renewable-energy fuels to produce electricity in place of natural gas and coal.

Praipol Koomsup, an economist specialising in energy issues, says the high level of air pollution in Bangkok indicates that that the country has not yet done enough to make the low-carbon economy a reality.

One of several key contributors to the pollution problem is the estimated 2.5 million diesel-powered trucks and buses still on city roads. Diesel engines produce a significant amount of the PM2.5 particulate matter – a big contributor to the health issues related to Bangkok’s smog.

Praipol backs the idea of government subsidies for people willing to buy electric vehicles, the cost of which remains high.

“The government plans to increase the amount of renewable fuel for producing electricity from about 10 per cent to 20 per cent in the next 20 years. That is our target and we need to do a lot to achieve it.”

Thanawat Polvichai, director of the Economic and Business Forecasting Centre at the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce, estimated that the air pollution could cost Bangkok businesses 5 billion-10 billion baht because, among other issues, no one wants to linger at open-air food stalls.

But Thanawat expects the crisis’ impact on the overall economy to be short-lived.

Speaking at a recent Thailand Development Research Institute seminar on “air pollution as a negative impact of development”, Adis Israngkura, an economist involved in national resources and the environment, urged the government to raise the tax ante.

“It should review the excise tax system and make it clear to people that pollution will be taxed heavily to discourage the use of dirty fuels such as diesel.”

But Adis believes the government is on the right track with its policies on sustainable development, but it needs to do more. PM Prayut Chan-o-cha chairs a committee overseeing the effort, he noted, but “Prayut could take more action”.

SOURCE: The Nation



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Bangkok

Mother says customer paying for sex with 5 year old daughter was girl’s father

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Mother says customer paying for sex with 5 year old daughter was girl’s father | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: tnews.co.th

A 28 year old woman, arrested in Chachoengsao, east of Bangkok, for allegedly selling her five year old daughter for sex, has revealed to police that the 52 year old customer who was allegedly caught in the act, and arrested at the time, was the young girl’s biological father.

The woman – whose name is being withheld to protect the victim’s identity – had reportedly taken the child twice weekly to be molested and raped by the customer, identified only as ‘Winai’. The mother allegedly received 200-300 baht each time.

The Nation reports that following their arrest on Sunday evening in an isolated location in Tambon Nong Yao in Phanom Sarakham district, the woman told police that she had had a sexual relationship with Winai – who was an already-married man with a daughter – and became pregnant with a baby girl.

She claimed that she had told Winai that the girl was his daughter, but the man had refused to accept that and so she had found another person to sign the birth certificate.

This case was brought to the Thai authority’s attention after a complaint was filed with the Dhamrongtham Centre over alleged child abuse.

The mother was charged with procuring a child for prostitution, illegal detention and coercion, while the man was charged with raping a minor under 16 and molesting a minor under 15.

The child has been put under the care of the Social Development and Human Security Ministry.

Mother says customer paying for sex with 5 year old daughter was girl's father | News by The Thaiger

PHOTO: news.co.th

SOURCE: The Nation

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Bangkok

Thon Buri pub raid, 38 patrons test positive for drugs

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Thon Buri pub raid, 38 patrons test positive for drugs | The Thaiger

Sur-PRIIISE!

Troops and police have raided a nightclub in Bangkok’s Thon Buri district at 3am this morning and found that 38 of its patrons tested positive to illicit drug use.

The Bangkok office of the Internal Security Operations Command conducted the early morning raid against the Wave Pub (formerly known as the Poseidon Pub) on Ratchadapisek Road in Talad Plu sub-district. The unit was joined by ISOC officials and anti-narcotics police from the Talad Plu police station.

The pub was closed under its old name three years ago on similar charges.

When the authorities stormed inside, they found 440 customers joining in a foam party for a late Songkran celebration. Of the 38 patrons arrested for drug use, 25 were woman. No underage drinkers were found inside the pub, or at least none were apprehended.

The authorities also found quantities of drugs, including ketamine and crystal methamphetamine, on the pub floor.

The 43 year old deputy manager Rewat Chaiyaphum was arrested on a charge of violating closing hour and allowing drugs to be used on the premises. The pub is now facing a five-year closure for violating closing hours and allowing drug use.

Thon Buri pub raid, 38 patrons test positive for drugs | News by The Thaiger Thon Buri pub raid, 38 patrons test positive for drugs | News by The Thaiger Thon Buri pub raid, 38 patrons test positive for drugs | News by The Thaiger

SOURCE: The Nation

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Bangkok

Beware exploding phones – warning about leaving phones in hot cars

The Thaiger

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Beware exploding phones – warning about leaving phones in hot cars | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: Facebook/Ying Yupa Anan

Don’t leave your mobile phone in your car if it’s going to be parked outside in the hot Thai sun. That’s the take-away message after an exploding mobile phone punched a hole  in this woman’s pick-up truck windscreen after leaving the phone sitting on the dash.

Samut Prakan, south of Bangkok city, resident Ying Yupa Anan posted on her Facebook…

“A punishment for a forgetful person, my pick-up truck is all damaged.”

Her ‘feeling sad’ post was accompanied by photos of her truck with a damaged and burnt windscreen.

Mobile phones are among items that people have been warned not to leave in the sun because the heat can damage their electronics and/or cause the battery to explode. Other items susceptible to damage if exposed to prolonged heat included power banks, especially those with lithium-ion batteries, as well as lighters and aerosol sprays.

According to the Thai Meteorological Department, a pressure system known as a “thermal low” is covering upper Thailand and is likely to continue for the rest of the week, while southerly and southeasterly winds prevail over the lower North, the Northeast, the Central, the East and the South regions bringing high humidity to those regions.

These conditions combined mean that upper Thailand is likely to experience hot to very hot spells with possible outbreaks of “summer storms” – sudden and localised thunderstorms with gusty winds, said the TMD.

Beware exploding phones - warning about leaving phones in hot cars | News by The Thaiger

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