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Cambodia wild fires blamed for Thailand’s air pollution

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According to a report published in The Thaiger, Bangkok Metropolitan Administration has closed public schools from Wednesday because of excessive air pollution. Most of the smoke and haze is blowing in from Cambodia with light easterly winds.

All schools under the supervision of the BMA will close until Friday. Air quality in the capital has worsened over the past few days with Bangkok recurring the world’s 5th worst air pollution yesterday (today it is 10th). The forecast is for light winds and poor air circulation which will compound the accumulation of PM2.5 dust and smoke particles.

While efforts have been made to reduce pollution in the capital, the poor air quality in Thailand has been blamed on plantation burn-offs from sugar, corn and rice fields in the central, north and north-east of Thailand, plus easterly airflows blowing in the same burn-off smoke from Cambodian farms.

Back in the city, district officials and municipal police will patrol open areas to make sure there is no burning outdoors, while city workers will spray water in the air and on roads to wash away dust.

The whole of Bangkok and its vicinity were found to contain excessive amounts of PM2.5 dust and smoke particles yesterday, measuring up to 188, nearly 4 times the upper safe limit imposed by the Pollution Control Department, and nearly 8 times the limit set by the World Health Organisation.

The windflower map shows the easterly winds blowing the forest and plantation smoke from Cambodia and Laos into Thailand. Chiang Mai is listed as the world’s 5th worst air pollution today. CNE

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