Survey reveals pollution as Thai citizens’ biggest worry

Photo courtesy of Thammasat University

A survey by Marketbuzzz reveals that Thais have declared environmental issues such as pollution as their top public concern for 2024, with 30% of respondents prioritising it, closely followed by rising prices at 28%.

This annual survey, running since 2019, highlights the growing unease about environmental issues among Thais, who also rank other concerns like corruption, healthcare, traffic congestion, crime, and the economy.

An alarming 74% of the public now say environmental issues significantly impact their quality of life, up from 62% in 2022. Despite this, 37% believe the situation will only worsen over the next five years. This stark contrast between concern and action is evident in daily behaviours: only 37% avoid illicit products, 34% use less electricity at home, and 33% use more reusable bags and containers. The majority, however, are not making substantial changes to their lifestyle to help the environment.

Marketbuzzz CEO, Grant Bertoli, remarked that the environment, alongside rising prices, remains a major concern for Thailand. While it tops the list, making eco-friendly choices in daily life is a bigger challenge, and more can be done for sustainable living.

The survey also noted that companies are stepping up their environmental efforts, with four—True, PTT, Samsung, and AIS—now recognised by over 40% of respondents for their positive impact on the environment.

Bertoli highlighted a critical issue.

“Thais have mixed views on who should lead environmental efforts. While the government is expected to play a significant role, individuals are also seen as equally responsible. Thais clearly want change and are willing to be part of it.”

The survey identified global warming (30%), air pollution (27%), and climate change (22%) as the top environmental concerns among Thai consumers. The causes of air pollution are varied, including smog from vehicles (30%), incineration of waste (26%), foam/plastic container use (23%), harmful construction chemicals (22%), and emissions from fossil fuels (21%).

Assistant Professor Dr Prapaporn Tivayanond Mongkhonvanit, Dean of the School of Global Studies at Thammasat University, commented that it is heartening to see increasing awareness of environmental threats, reported Thammasat University.

“Our work focuses on educating future leaders to drive the social change needed to tackle these challenges. There is a clear gap between awareness and action. Practical steps are needed to empower both individuals and organisations to make sustainable choices consistently. Protecting our environment is a shared responsibility, and it is never too late to contribute to a sustainable future.”

Environment NewsThailand News

Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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