6 June 2024

A number of Chiang Mai’s residents have taken to social media to post sarcastic comments about the continuing air pollution, in desperation over government’s failure to address the problem.

One such comment reads “We will select and burn only quality dried leaves. There is smoke from the forest fires in the northern mountains mixed with smoke from maize waste. They are burn during the break from the threat from weed-killing chemicals. You can be sure that every grain of the super fine PM2.5 will reach your nose and get into your lungs. Hurry up, the dried leaves will run out soon.”

The other comment, from Dr Rungsrit Kanjanavanit, an oncology specialist at the Faculty of Medicine of Chiang Mai University, reads “Chiang Mai, every breath is an adventure. It is crazy today, an unliveable place.”

In Chiang Rai, a group of local artists gathered to hold a contest for who can hold their breath for the longest time, to tell the world that the PM2.5 problem is unbearable.

A huge 13m by 2.5m image was painted by a group of artists, depicting Phu Chi Fa mountain and trees on fire.

Residents plan to gather in front of the Phaya Mengrai monument at 5pm on Monday, to tell authorities concerned that the dust crisis is now unbearable.

In Chiang Mai, residents are being urged to show up at the Legal Research and Development Centre of the Law Faculty at Chiang Mai University, to sign up in support of a lawsuit to be filed with the Chiang Mai Administrative Court against Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, the National Environment Board and the Securities and Exchange Commission over the PM2.5 problem.