|1||Phra Samut Chedi, Samut Prakan|
|2||Sam Roi Yot, Prachuap Khiri Khan|
|3||Nakhon Phanom, Nakhon Phanom|
|4||Lat Krabang, Bangkok|
|5||Phra Pradaeng, Samut Prakan|
|6||Pom Prap Sattru Phai, Bangkok|
|7||Phasi Charoen, Bangkok|
|8||Si Sawat, Kanchanaburi|
|9||Nong Khaem, Bangkok|
(local time)SEE WORLD AQI RANKING
live AQI index
|Air pollution level||Air quality index||Main pollutant|
|Moderate|| 80 US AQI||PM2.5|
|PM2.5|| 25.8 µg/m³|
PM2.5 concentration in Chon Buri air is currently 5.2 times above the WHO annual air quality guideline value
|Close your windows to avoid dirty outdoor air|
|Sensitive groups should reduce outdoor exercise|
|Sunday, Nov 28|
Moderate 81 US AQI
|Monday, Nov 29|
Moderate 74 US AQI
|Tuesday, Nov 30|
Moderate 90 US AQI
Moderate 80 US AQI
|Thursday, Dec 2|
Moderate 79 US AQI
|Friday, Dec 3|
Moderate 83 US AQI
|Saturday, Dec 4|
Moderate 86 US AQI
|Sunday, Dec 5|
Moderate 87 US AQI
|Monday, Dec 6|
Moderate 97 US AQI
|Tuesday, Dec 7|
Moderate 91 US AQI
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Chon Buri is a province, or state located in the eastern region of Thailand. The capitalcity of this state also goes by the same name, and it is home to the majortourist destination city of Pattaya. The population numbers appear to be risingat quite a high rate over the last few years, with many Thai nationals as wellas expatriates or foreign workers making their way over to Chon Buri. Theregistered population as of late 2018 was over 1.5 million, although it isknown that there are many more inhabitants that are unregistered, particularly amongst certain groups of locals.
The etymology of the cities name comes from ancient Sanskrit as a combination of the words‘water’ and ‘city’, hence leading to it being known as city of water, due toits coastal location as well as the historical relevance of such closeproximity of these bodies of water.
Looking at some of the cities contained within the state, it is apparent that Chon Buridoes indeed suffer from many pollutive issues, with cities such as Bang Lamungas well as Pattaya both coming in with elevated readings of PM2.5, although ofnote is that they are free from year round elevated readings of pollution, andtheir yearly averages tend to get skewed by particularly polluted months thatlet the whole year down. Some months actually manage to come in nicely withinthe World Health Organizations (WHO's) target goal of 10 μg/m³ or less for thebest quality of air, with the closer to 0 being of course the most optimal.
Bang Lamung came in with a PM2.5 average of 23 μg/m³ over 2019, putting it into the‘moderate’ pollution bracket, which requires a PM2.5 reading of anywherebetween 12.1 to 35.4 μg/m³ to be classified as such. This reading also placedit into 720th place out of all cities ranked worldwide in 2019, areading that whilst not overtly disastrous is still indicative of some fairly prominent pollution issues.
Pattaya also came in with a yearly average reading of 20.9 μg/m³, placing it again in themoderate ratings bracket as well as 835th out of all cities rankedworldwide. Si Racha also came in with a reading of 20.8 μg/m³, as well as thecity of Chon Buri coming in at 19.5 μg/m³.
This is indicative that Chon Buri state does indeed have some air pollution relatedissues that need addressing, with some months rising up into dangerous levelsof pollution, with the reasons as to why being discussed in short.
With a rapidly growing economy, as well as a rising population and more infrastructureand urban planning being committed to the various cities in Chon Buri state,the related anthropogenic (human based) activity would subsequently be on therise, and as preventative measures to reduce pollution come into play, so doother compounding factors to make it worse, creating a cat and mouse situationwhereby the pollution levels fluctuate between getting better and worse.
With Pattaya being a major tourist destination, there would be a large amount of pollutionassociated with this aspect, although of note is that during the year of 2020and beyond, the covid-19 crisis has largely stopped all forms of tourism fromoccurring, even restricting the movement of locals from moving around in theirown country. This has had a large impact on reducing pollution levels in ChonBuri, as well as worldwide, although due to the transient nature of this periodof time, 2019 will be a better guide to utilize in order to understand Chon Buri’s pollution levels.
The main causes of pollution would be from vehicle fumes, with numerous cars, motorbikesand heavy duty vehicles such as trucks, buses and lorries making their wayacross each of the cities, as well as travel in and out of the province. Manyof these would run on outdated engines, particularly the heavy duty vehicles,notorious for the outpouring of black soot and other visible pollutants, oftenrunning on diesel fuels that give off far more pollution than newer or cleaner counterparts would.
Other causes of pollution would be industry, with thousands of factories across the regiongiving off smoke and haze from the use of diesel in their heavy machinery, aswell as widespread use of coal to provide energy to these plants. Industrialeffluence as a side effect of whatever product is being made is also acontributing factor, besides just the fumes released from the combustion of coal.
Other sources would include construction sites, with rapid growth often seeing large amountsof new infrastructure popping up and the subsequent massive increase in construction.Poorly maintained sites can leak off large amounts of fine particulate mattersas well as microplastics and even heavy metals such as lead, mercury or cadmium.
Other pertinent issues would be open burning sources caused by people disposing ofrefuse or waste via burning out in the open, as well as crop and stubbleburning caused by farmers utilizing the extremely illegal slash and burnfarming methods. Despite their high level of illegality, they still continue toafflict many parts of Thailand, often taking place in hard to reach areasoutside of a city’s limits, and under the cover of darkness. All of theseissues added together would cause the heightened readings of PM2.5 that wererecorded in the state of Chon Buri over 2019.
With main pollution sources mostly coming from the combustion of one material or another,the subsequent fumes, smoke and haze in the air would be permeated with relatedforms of chemical compounds, some of which arise directly from the source, withothers forming as a ‘secondary’ pollutant whereby chemicals in the air, underthe right conditions, will bond together to form novel and even more dangerous forms of pollution.
Some of the main pollutants that would be found coming from vehicles would be ones such asnitrogen dioxide (NO2) and sulfur dioxide (SO2). Nitrogendioxide is a particularly prominent culprit here, having the ability to causedamage to the lungs of people who are exposed on a daily basis as well as causeirritation to the respiratory tract and trigger off conditions such as asthma.
Other pollutants would include ones such as black carbon and volatile organiccompounds (VOC's), some of which would include ones such as xylene toluene,methylene chloride, tetrachloroethylene, ethylene glycol and formaldehyde. Allof these are extremely harmful to breathe, and extremely easy to do so due totheir volatile nature making them reach a gaseous form at much lowertemperatures as compared to many other compounds.
These are all pollutants released from the burning of organic materials, biomass and fossilfuels, as well as inorganic materials such as rubber or plastics, sometimesfound emanating from industrial areas or from open burn sites.
Apart from chemical compounds, fine particulate matters or forms of PM2.5 or PM.10 wouldbe found in the air near industrial or construction sites, with ones such asblack carbon or finely ground gravel or silica dust being prominent. Both blackcarbon and silica dust are known to have carcinogenic properties when inhaled.These are but a few of the pollutants that would be found in the air in ChonBuri, with other novel pollutants being introduced during periods of particularly high PM2.5 readings.
Observing the data taken over 2019 once again, a distinct pattern emerges across all citiesin the state of Chon Buri, with certain months having much cleaner readings ofPM2.5 and with other months being considerably worse.
The months that came in with the highest readings of PM2.5, meaning that the air would be atits most permeated with smoke, haze, smog and other pollutants, were Septemberthrough to December, with September being the start of a gradual decline thatcarries on into the next year of January, with elevated levels of pollutionbeing present until around April or May, when the pollution levels start toabate again and the air quality improves.
To use Bang Lamung and Pattaya as an example, in Bang Lamung a clear decline is witnessedin September, with a reading of 19.1 μg/m³, followed by 26.6 μg/m³ in Octoberand then 40.5 μg/m³ in November and finally 42.8 μg/m³ in December, making itthe most polluted month of the year for this city.
Although there is some data missing in January for both of the aforementioned cities, SiRacha and Chon Buri city all had similar patterns, only with their highestreadings coming in over January, indicating that this may be the most pollutedmonth of the year, despite lacking concrete recordings for the first two citiesin early 2019.
Both Si Racha and Chon Buri city had PM2.5 readings of 52.1 μg/m³ and 49.9 μg/m³ in January,making it by far the most polluted time of the year, with November and Decemberfollowing closely behind.
In contrast to the previous question, the middle portion of the year is when every singlecity displayed a greatly improved quality of air. June through to August allhad respectable readings, many of which fell within the WHO's target goal of 10μg/m³ or less, with 8 occurrences of this WHO target being hit across the 3cities during those three months, as well as 3 instances of the ‘good’ ratingsbracket being achieved, showing that the middle period of the year between Juneand August is when the air quality is at its absolute best, with the bestquality of air to breathe and considerably less health issues when compared tothe more polluted months.