“Return Clear Skies to North” Group Join at Rim Khum Junction to Protest Against Smog Levels

 | Thu 10 Mar 2016 05:09 ICT

CityNews – On March 9, a group named “Return Clear Skies to the North” protested about the smog levels, outside Maya Lifestyle Shopping Mall on the Rim Kham Intersection.

clear skies protest

The group were wearing masks and handing out masks to people who passed by. The goal of the symbolic protest was to encourage the government to take serious action in solving the smog problem, and persuade locals to get more involved.

Their facebook page is here.

According to the local municipality, the PM10 levels are around 49-80ug/m3, and are currently ‘not at harmful levels’. However, extensive recordings by several other groups including the US Consulate put the air quality levels at ‘dangerous’ after measuring PM2.5 particle levels instead of PM10 levels and translating them into Air Quality Index, averaging around 150 AQI every day.

A status update on the US Consulate’s Facebook page stated:

“Dr. Kate Weber, air quality expert with the U.S. Department of State, confirmed Monday that PM2.5 AQI was a far more accurate predictor of air quality on health, due to the ability of such small particulates to pass into our bloodstream and organs, increasing long-term health problems such as lung and heart disease and cancer. Chiang Mai’s high PM2.5 levels (often as high as 70-80 percent of PM10) mean that PM10 AQIs dramatically underestimate potential negative health effects. She advised that those in a position to advise changes in activity from air pollution levels, should consider PM2.5 AQI instead of (or at least in conjunction with) PM10 AQI levels whenever those data are available.”

People are advised to follow air quality levels and protect themselves appropriately by wearing proper masks and avoiding any physical exercise outside.