|2||Chaloem Phra Kiat, Sara Buri|
|3||Hang Chat, Lampang|
|4||Si Samrong, Sukhothai|
|7||Mae Taeng, Chiang Mai|
|8||Pai, Mae Hong Son|
|9||Hang Dong, Chiang Mai|
|10||Mae Mo, Lampang|
(local time)SEE WORLD AQI RANKING
live AQI index
|Air pollution level||Air quality index||Main pollutant|
|Moderate|| 82 US AQI||PM2.5|
PM2.5 concentration in Mae On air is currently 5.4 times above the WHO annual air quality guideline value
|Close your windows to avoid dirty outdoor air|
|Sensitive groups should reduce outdoor exercise|
|Wednesday, May 25|
Moderate 60 US AQI
|Thursday, May 26|
Moderate 73 US AQI
|Friday, May 27|
Moderate 77 US AQI
Moderate 82 US AQI
|Sunday, May 29|
Moderate 94 US AQI
|Monday, May 30|
Moderate 77 US AQI
|Tuesday, May 31|
Moderate 78 US AQI
|Wednesday, Jun 1|
Moderate 75 US AQI
|Thursday, Jun 2|
Moderate 76 US AQI
|Friday, Jun 3|
Moderate 69 US AQI
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The air in Mae On is showing heavy levels of air pollution, with numerous readings throughout January, February and March of 2022 coming in with US AQI readings that put it into the 'unhealthy' air quality rating bracket. To cite some examples, in early March of 2022, a US AQI reading of 179 was recorded, placing Mae On quite high once again within the 'unhealthy' rating bracket, and with a correlating PM2.5 concentration that was nearly 22 times higher than the World Health Organization's (WHO's) guidelines for safe levels of exposure. As such, during the early months of the year (and many others, which will be touched on in further detail), the air in Mae On is more likely to be permeated with smoke, smog, haze and numerous other highly dangerous forms of particle pollution and chemical compounds.
With its northern position in Thailand playing a fairly large role in its air pollution levels, Mae On is consistently affected by the slash and burn farming issues that continue to take place. Due to this, pollution levels will tend to be higher in Mae On during the months that see the open burning of organic material taking place. Beyond this, many anthropogenic and industrial-related issues also contribute to the elevated air pollution levels present in Mae On, along with natural or man-made disasters potentially contributing. Vehicles, as with many cities throughout Thailand and Asia, can contribute significantly to the air pollution levels, leaving accumulations of smog, haze, smoke and damaging particulate matter in the air close to ground level, making it easy to breathe and thus presenting many health risks to the citizens of Mae On. With increasing vehicle ownership, there comes further pollution from said vehicles, due to the combustion process in the engines giving out high quantities of fumes that contain all manner of chemical compounds. Furthermore, with many aged or poor quality vehicles still in use (which are far more prevalent in rural areas, despite efforts to remove them from the roads), pollution levels can rise further from their use, as the poor combustion process taking place within the engine, along with cheaper or lower quality fuels often used, can lead to noxious oil vapors leaking from the engines, along with a much higher output of dangerous particles.
Heavier freight vehicles, vital to the transportation of both people (buses) as well as industrial materials or other produce (trucks and lorries) can also give out a large amount of pollution, often running on diesel fuel which can give out many of its unique pollutants when combusted. With all vehicles, there is also the issue of residual wear and tear occurring on the tire treads, which can lead to many tons of microscopic rubber particles being deposited into the air. Rush hour traffic in certain areas may also lead to the buildup of soot, or black carbon around roadside areas, which can have highly damaging effects on both the environment, as well as human health when inhaled. Other prominent or noteworthy causes of air pollution include emissions from factories and power plants, along with other similar industrial areas. Poorly paved roads can give off large amounts of dust and fine particles, along with construction sites (and even demolition sites) all contributing to elevated levels of air pollution in Mae On.
People that are affected the most by air pollution exposure in Mae On include the elderly, along with young children, pregnant mothers, as well as those that have pre-existing health conditions or compromised immune systems. Extra care should be taken by these groups to ensure that more chronic or acute conditions are avoided.
The air quality in Mae On is most likely to see its highest readings appear at both the beginning and at the end of the year. Air pollution levels typically start to show up in the latter months, and then continue on till the early months of the following year, with some of these months having potentially even higher readings than the late months of the previous year (with this information being largely based off of many air pollution figures taken across a huge number of cities in Thailand), with significantly higher readings of US AQI and PM2.5 concentrations being present. Although these are largely based on many patterns seen throughout the country, as mentioned, there are of course a few exceptions (with some cities seeing ambient levels of relatively high air pollution throughout the year, but lacking the dangerous spikes that are seen in the aforementioned times of the year), Mae On is most likely to see the higher air pollution levels at these times (the last few months of the year, typically starting around September, but potentially earlier, all the way through to the end of the year. Furthermore, the early months of the following year continue to see heightened pollution readings, with some of the highest figures of US AQI and PM2.5 cropping up from through to March or even April. As was mentioned, changes can always occur and air quality readings should be kept up to date, with these being available both on this page as well as the AirVisual app.
A large number of pollutants that can be found in areas around Mae On as well as surrounding cities in the northern region of Thailand, particularly prominent around Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai province include ones that come mainly from combustion sources. These can include ones such as the ongoing issue of open burn fires, as well as combustion from vehicle engines, boilers in factories and other industrial sites. Some of the main pollutants released when any form of combustion takes place are ones such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), as well as black carbon, along with other pollutants that go into calculating the US AQI aggregate. The chemicals used to calculate this US AQI figure include nitrogen dioxide, sulfur dioxide, carbon monoxide, ozone, as well as the two main forms of particle pollution, PM2.5 and PM10. Of these two, the smaller PM2.5 is well known as the far more dangerous, due to its minute size of 2.5 micrometers or less in diameter allowing it to bypass the bodies defense systems and lodge deep within the tissue of the lungs (with more on this being discussed in the following health issues question). PM2.5 and some forms of PM10 can consist of materials such as water droplets and vapor, along with a variety of other liquids that can be aerosolized.
Other materials include mold and fungal spores, bacteria, metals, nitrates and sulfates, along with finely ground silica dust, which can have a carcinogenic effect when inhaled. Some examples of the aforementioned VOCs include chemical compounds such as benzene, styrene, methylene chloride, toluene, xylene and formaldehyde. Their volatile nature allows them to maintain a gaseous state at much lower temperatures, thus making them much easier to breathe, and would be encountered prevalently around inhabited areas of Mae On, due to their discharge from everything from fires, cars, factories as well as even from household items. VOCs are one of the major sources of indoor air pollution and can emanate from products such as glue, paint, varnish, as well as aerosols such as deodorant, scented candles and other toiletries. These are some of the more prevalent air pollutants that may be found around Mae On, with certain areas such as busy roads and intersections that see a high level of rush hour traffic having higher concentrations of pollutants such as nitrogen dioxide, ozone and black carbon.