Relevant government agencies need to have effective and sustainable prevention and relief measures to cope with the poor air quality in Bangkok as several mega infrastructure projects are now kicked off the ground in the capital, an academic says.
Rector of the King Mongkut’s Institute of Technology Ladkrabang (KMITL) Mr Suchatvee Suwansawat said construction of several mega projects which included electric trains, road extensions, and large condominium projects have contributed to an increase of fine particulate matter smaller than 2.5 microns, or PM2.5, in Bangkok.
Small dust particle from these construction sites has worsened air quality in the capital in addition to pollution from auto vehicles and burnings.
Mr Suchatvee’s advice came as Bangkok’s air quality dropped below standard with PM2.5 reached dangerously high levels in many areas during the past weeks.
Latest measurement of PM2.5 released on Monday (Feb 12) at 8am by the Department of Pollution Control (PCD) showed that the health-threatening fine particulate matter levels were still high, measuring at between 46-59 micrograms/cubic meter against the limit of 50 micrograms/ cubic meter. Areas where the PM2.5 level exceed the limit were Intharapitak and Lat Phrao roads.
The PCD projected that PM2.5 levels in all areas will be increasing this week due to cloudy and foggy weather condition in Bangkok.
It then warned patients and risk groups such as those having respiratory and heart problems to wear face masks to protect themselves when going out-door.
The KMITL rector urged relevant agencies to closely monitor the levels of small dust partiacle at the construction sites of mega projects in Bangkok.
These mega projects are significant factors that affect Bangkok air quality and inevitably pose potential health hazards. Therefore, state agencies, notably the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration must close monitor the dust levels at these construction sites.
In case of dust particles in any area reach critical levels, authorities should immediately issue warning to those held responsible to resolve and minimize the dust levels to safety level, he said.
Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (Thai PBS)