PM orders more cloud-seeding operation to further ease air pollution

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has ordered artificial rain-making operations to be continued for another period of time after the first operation on Tuesday produced satisfactory result in reducing air pollution over the city, government spokesman Putthipong Punnakan said today.

The Royal Rain-making and Agricultural Aviation Department launched cloud-seeding operation on Tuesday morning using two planes from its regional base in the eastern province of Rayong to conduct three flights between Chachoengsao and Nakhon Nayok provinces to seed clouds which were blown by wind to Bangkok and its peripherals, resulting in brief rain over the city in late afternoon.

Rain was reported yesterday in Phya Thai, Prawet, Bang Kapi, Huay Kwang and Bang Sue districts and parts of Nonthaburi and Pathum Thani provinces.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperation insisted that the rain yesterday was the result of cloud-seeding operation by the Royal Rain-making and Agricultural Aviation Department and it has considerably reduced the amount of PM2.5 dust particles in the air.

Citing report about air quality conditions before and after the rain yesterday as measured by monitoring stations at 7 am and 7 pm,  Putthipong said that the air quality in many parts of Bangkok, Samut Prakan and Pathum Thani provinces which had rain yesterday have improved satisfactorily.

Meanwhile, the Hydro and Agro Informatics Institute (HAII) reported today that the arrival of northeastern wind current and eastern wind current today would further ease the air pollution problem caused by PM2.5 dust particles.

HAII said that Bangkok would be breezy the whole day with wind velocity starting at 5-8 kph in the morning and eventually picking up to about 9.7 kph and the wind will help blow away many dust particles from the city.

It noted that during January 12-14 when air pollution peaked, air circulation in Bangkok was zero.

The Pollution Control Department reported that the amount of PM2.5 dust particles in and around Bangkok has substantially reduced to between 35-65 microns compared to more than 50-over 80 microns in the past several days.


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