BANGKOK, Rainfall in parts of Bangkok today cleared some of the smog that has blanketed the city for days.
Although the showers brought some improvement to the haze situation in the city, the air quality and levels of particulate matter of 2.5 microns and less in diameter (PM2.5) in several areas remained in the ‘unhealthy’ band.
According to the Pollution Control Department (PCD)’ s website, the level of PM2.5 was as high as 70 micrograms and the air quality stood at 147 in Bangkok as of 5 pm (local time) today.
To combat smog that occasionally covered the city and other parts of the kingdom, the Thai government has pledged to carry out various measures to tackle the issue that posed a health threat to the public.
Prime Minister General Prayuth Chan o-cha said the government through the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and the Department of Pollution Control will take anti-pollution measures in combat the smog and reduces the PM2.5 level
The public should join hands to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the transport sector and stop opening burning in the city. Factories and building sites should reduce activities that cause pollution, he said after chairing a cabinet meeting at the government house today.
Prayuth said the smog thickened in Bangkok and surrounding areas following stagnant air and high humidity that prevented the dispersal of ultrafine dust from vehicle emissions, construction sites and other pollutants.
He said the relevant agency is ready to spray water at areas with high level of PM2.5.
This is the second time this year Bangkok has been plagued by the smog. In January this year, smog forced Bangkok authorities to shut down nearly 450 schools following an unhealthy level of smog.
Meanwhile, the Thai Meteorological Department forecast more rainfall is expected in the upper part of the country, including Bangkok starting today until Oct 6.
Its deputy director general, Kornrawee Sitthichivapak, said the haze situation may improve this week with rain forecast over the next few days.
About 40 to 60 per cent of the capital is expected to see downpours this week and it is expected to reduce the PM 2.5 concentration level, he said.
Meanwhile, Interior Minister Gen. Anupong Paochinda also instructed provincial governors to take necessary measures to tackle open burning of farm waste, especially in sugar cane and corn plantations during the harvest season in November.
‘Stringent measures are needed to handle the problem, he said.
Source: BERNAMA (News Agency)