Land-use Fires and Smoke Pollution in Northern Thailand
18-19 February 2012
Smoke from open burning of agricultural waste is depicted by this image captured by the MODIS instrument on NASAs Aqua satellite on 18 February 2012 (for 250 m resolution image click on the image). Thailand’s northern provinces of Chiang Mai remained covered by haze pollution while concerned agencies planned to use artificial rain to abate particulate dust particles, which are rising above safe levels. Chiang Mai governor Panadda Disakul said haze pollution blanketed the province for a second day and that he has instructed district chiefs to impose strict measures against those lighting fires in farm and forest areas. The governor however conceded that it was difficult to control the situation, which has enveloped the northern region, with several provinces facing levels of dust particles rising over all safe levels.
Latest news from Thailand (18 and 19 February 2012):
http://www.bangkokpost.com/news/local/280596/face-masks-handed-out-to-combat-haze (GFMC archive, access with password)
http://www.bangkokpost.com/news/local/280514/blanket-of-haze-hits-north (GFMC archive, access with password)
http://www.mcot.net/cfcustom/cache_page/332460.html (GFMC archive, access with password)
This vegetation fire smoke pollution event is occurring during the days when a group of Canadian and Australian scientists announced and presented recent scientific findings about the role of fire smoke emissions on human health, which resulted in a global average death toll of 339,000 people during the decade 1997-2006.
Press releases on Seminar on Fires, Smoke, and Health: Impacts and Prevention at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Annual Meeting in Vancouver, Canada (18 and 19 February 2012):