|1||Mae Taeng, Chiang Mai|
|3||Chaloem Phra Kiat, Sara Buri|
|4||Bang Khon Thi, Samut Songkhram|
|5||Bang Kapi, Bangkok|
|6||Hang Chat, Lampang|
|7||Udon Thani, Changwat Udon Thani|
|9||Thung Chang, Nan|
|10||Hat Yai, Songkhla|
(local time)SEE WORLD AQI RANKING
live AQI index
|Air pollution level||Air quality index||Main pollutant|
|Moderate|| 78* US AQI||PM2.5|
PM2.5 concentration in Si Racha air is currently 5 times above the WHO annual air quality guideline value
|Close your windows to avoid dirty outdoor air|
|Sensitive groups should reduce outdoor exercise|
Moderate 78 US AQI
|Wednesday, May 25|
Moderate 70 US AQI
|Thursday, May 26|
Moderate 71 US AQI
|Friday, May 27|
Moderate 86 US AQI
|Saturday, May 28|
Moderate 94 US AQI
|Sunday, May 29|
Moderate 92 US AQI
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Si Racha has a varying level of air pollution throughout the year, much like many cities and towns throughout Thailand. In 2020, Si Racha had over three different levels of air quality classifications, ranging from the 'good' air quality rating up to the 'unhealthy for sensitive groups' bracket in certain months of the year, which will be discussed at the end of the article regarding when the air is at its most polluted in Si Racha. Looking at some of the US AQI readings present in Si Racha towards the end of September 2021, it can be seen that a figure of 38 was recorded, placing Si Racha into the 'good' air quality bracket. This is one of the most optimal ratings that can be achieved, indicating that at this time of the year the air is significantly freer from smoke, haze and other pollutants. Forecasts indicate that the US AQI reading (a number calculated from the main pollutants found in the air) may go up to 'moderate' readings (which is anywhere between 51 to 100 on the US AQI scale). Whilst these are not overtly bad by any means, it must be noted that based on past patterns, the air quality will likely continue to decline towards the end of the year, before reaching its most polluted period in the early months of the following year.
Many of the main contributing factors in rising levels of air pollution in Si Racha are ones such as the exhaust fumes released from the vehicles in use on the road. With cars, motorbikes and heavier freight vehicles such as lorries and trucks in use on the road, they all compound the pollution situation and add to the overall PM2.5 and US AQI levels. It is not uncommon for many of these vehicles to be significantly aged, damaged, or in a poorer condition due to years of usage, which puts a greater strain on the environment due to the higher output of pollution released, due to the poor combustion process that takes place within run-down engines. Large amounts of oil vapors, hazardous particles and chemical compounds are released from these more aged vehicles, far more than what be seen emanating from newer or more environmentally-friendly models. Referring back to the heavier freight vehicles contributing to motor-based pollution, many of these larger vehicles use diesel as their main fuel source, which as a result can give out many tons of chemical compounds and fine particles that come from the combustion of fossil fuels. Furthermore, microscopic rubber particles from the residual wear and tear of the tire treads are also thrown into the atmosphere, leading to large buildups in various ecosystems over time. This causes particle pollution to go up by a considerable amount, impacting the topsoil as well as the various ecosystems and around it. Other sources of air pollution include dust from construction sites, road repairs, and even demolition sites (all of which can be a major source of particulate matter, far more than many people are aware of), along with the burning of trash, although this continues to be on the decline in more developed areas and mostly a continuing issue within certain provinces or far away from any major cities.
Continual exposure to higher amounts of polluted air in Si Racha can cause a large number of highly negative health effects and other serious conditions, particularly pertinent to those individuals who fall under the sensitive group's bracket. Of note though, is that even healthy adults may fall ill or sustain damage when air pollution exposure is excessive, or exposure takes place over a long period of time (particularly prominent for those who live closer to highly polluted areas, which include industrial districts or near busy roads and highways, where the air quality will be poor for a majority of the year). Many conditions that can arise as a result would be short-term ones such as dry throat and coughs, as well as chest pains and subsequent infections of the respiratory tract and lungs. These typically resolve themselves fairly quickly when exposure to air pollution is lessened or stopped outright. They can, however, also develop into more long-term or chronic issues, with continuous chest infections and coughing leading to the scarring of lung tissue, which often results in permanently decreased lung capacity.
Additionally, the subsequent scarring or damage and inflammation to the tissue of the lungs will make individuals far more vulnerable to a whole host of respiratory distress, with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) presenting itself. COPD is an umbrella term that encompasses a plethora of lung and respiratory tract ailments, usually resulting in shortness of breath and other unwanted or adverse symptoms. Breathing in polluted air when an individual already suffers from pre-existing conditions can cause them to worsen, and thus progress into potentially more life-threatening forms of said illness. Some of the conditions that can be classified under the COPD bracket are aggravated forms of asthma, as well as emphysema, pneumonia and bronchitis. Other forms of damage that can happen within the body include increased risk of cancer, heart attacks, strokes and arrhythmias, as well as ischemic heart disease and many other cardiac or pulmonary conditions that can bring about decreased quality of life as well as lower an individual’s life expectancy.
Observing the air quality data collected over the course of 2020, it can be seen that Si Racha had its most prominent spikes in pollution in the early months of the year, with both January and February coming in with PM2.5 readings of 37.2 μg/m³ and 38.6 μg/m³ respectively. This placed both of these months into the 'unhealthy for sensitive groups' bracket, which requires a PM2.5 reading of anywhere between 35.5 to 55.4 μg/m³ to be classified as such. These were the only two months of the year to achieve such a rating and indicate that the air would be significantly more permeated by clouds of smoke, haze, ultrafine particles and other dangerous chemicals and air contaminants.
Once again looking at the PM2.5 readings from 2020, the cleanest months in Si Racha were June through to September, all of which fell within the 'good' air quality rating bracket, which requires a reading of 10 to 12 μg/m³ for classification, giving it a very fine margin of entry. Out of all of these months, August had the best air quality average, coming in at 10.8 μg/m³, making it only a few units away from achieving the World Health Organization's (WHO's) target for the most optimal level of air quality at 10 μg/m³ or less.