Connect with us


Island View: Pollution in Paradise

Legacy Phuket Gazette



PHUKET: In 2015, Delhi was named the world’s most polluted city.

When I first saw this report, it made me think back 10 years ago when I was a university student in Phuket and went to Bangkok for a three-month internship.

Nearly a decade ago, everything in Bangkok was good – except for the air pollution. The main reason was the carbon monoxide from cars, motorbikes,buses and trucks – it’s widely-accepted that Bangkok has the most terrible traffic in all of Thailand.

During my three months in the hustle and bustle of the city, I told myself that I’d never settle down in a place like that. I hate traffic jams and air pollution, and I really missed Phuket – my island of paradise. I knew that I’d start a family here one day.

Recently, I followed through on my wish and now have a family and a job – except that my island of paradise now faces the issue of traffic and air pollution as well.

For example, the other day I drove my motorbike to lunch a short distance from where I work. It took at least 20 minutes to get there, thanks to the bumper to bumper traffic. I feel that one of the main contributors to today’s traffic congestion is the underpass construction, which affects all of Phuket’s main roadways.

To make things worse, I was engulfed by exhaust fumes and smoke all around me; it felt like being in Bangkok all over again.

When cycling or riding a motorbike behind a bus that is spewing black smoke everywhere, it’s hard to imagine that that that vehicle has passed an annual inspection. In fact, many vehicles on the roads have clearly not passed annual inspections and are pumping black exhaust into the atmosphere that then goes straight into the lungs of other drivers and pedestrians.

Another reason for congestion and air-pollution is that we have too many vehicles on the road – the population is growing rapidly and public transportation is inefficient and sometimes too expensive.

There are several other factors causing air pollution and traffic congestion: emissions from industries and households, and farming chemicals, to name a couple. But, in my opinion, the biggest one that needs the most urgent attention is carbon monoxide from fuel combustion in the engines of vehicles.

No wonder the island is full of smog.I worry that if we do not do something drastic, Phuket will not only become the province with the worst traffic, but also, potentially, the most polluted city in the world.

— Pruth Kulprasit


Want more Thailand news from the Thaiger family?

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS for instant updates on your mobile
📝️ Join the conversation on Thaiger Talk - discuss news & life in our Thailand forums
📧 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🔔 Subscribe to or Join our YouTube channel for daily video updates


Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Coronavirus (Covid-19)20 mins ago

CCSA: 120 day reopening will proceed with conditions

Tourism1 hour ago

Sandbox latest, CCSA says all regions reopening must reach 70% local vaccination

Coronavirus (Covid-19)4 hours ago

Covid UPDATE Saturday: 3,667 new infections and 32 deaths

Phuket Sandbox July 1st


Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in July - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages in June!

Sponsored by image

Politics5 hours ago

Thamanat elected to role of head ‘fixer’ in Palang Pracharat party

Expats14 hours ago

List: China has over 50% of all foreign-owned condos in Thailand

Coronavirus (Covid-19)16 hours ago

Government plans 10 million vaccines for July

World19 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Vaccine deaths investigation, PM heads to Phuket, BMA extends vendor licences | June 18

Thailand20 hours ago

1 million AstraZeneca doses arrive, Anutin says “more” on the way

Drugs20 hours ago

1.2 tonnes of methamphetamine and heroin seized near Malaysian border

Coronavirus (Covid-19)20 hours ago

Pattaya bars plead for government help

Thailand20 hours ago

Colour-coded zoning revised, restrictions to ease nationwide

Transport21 hours ago

Department of Land Transport will reopen, issue licenses

Best of21 hours ago

Top 8 Things to do in Chiang Mai

Tourism21 hours ago

Krabi schedules 82 flights per week from late October

Best of21 hours ago

Top 6 Online Forums in Thailand

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism4 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism4 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism4 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8