Thailand’s north still burning and choking despite PM’s vow

The view Tuesday in Chiang Mai city. Photo: JupjangJarr / Twitter
The view Tuesday in Chiang Mai city. Photo: JupjangJarr / Twitter

Chiang Mai continues to have the world’s worst air pollution today and fires still blaze across the north — far from snuffed out as promised by the prime minister.

Despite Gen. Prayuth Chan-o-cha’s vow last week to put out all fires by today, satellite data from the Thai space agency yesterday found hundreds of “hot spots” where they are believed to be burning.

They were spotted in nine provinces including Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Phrae and Trat.

PM Vows to Snuff All Northern Fires in 7 Days

While satellite imagery showed a large drop in the number of hot spots, it hasn’t improved the region’s “unhealthy” air quality.

At 10am today, Chiang Mai’s air quality was indexed at 174, which means “everyone may begin to experience health effects,” according to the World Air Quality Project.

Last week, prior to Prayuth’s call to action, the Geo-Informatics and Space Technology Development Agency released images of 3,088 hot spots burning in the northern provinces.

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