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webfact

Haze starts to cover Phayao despite 60-day burning ban

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will get in those high places........

just call it an early Sonkram

That happened in Indonesia a few months ago.

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Absolutely right in criticizing me. I will be evacuating the 27th at the latest Landing at the airport today was unbelievable. Almost no visibility and you could smell the cinders. Now in Chiang Rai, the air is thick. I walked over to that joke of a temporary bus station to see if I could get a ticket to Chiang Mai asap, I give credit to the buses for turning off the bus engines. I haven't experienced anything like this before, and it's not being treated as the public health crisis that it is. The government isn't being honest on how dangerous, deadly and damaging the air quality is. There needs to be immediate action now, even if it means using live fire on the people setting the fires. Yes, live fire. Would you let an arsonist burn your house down or poison you? The army has all sorts of helicopters, personnel and vehicles at its disposal. It needs to deploys and stop this now. The people setting the fires know what they are doing is wrong and they have been told to stop. They don't give a sh*t, because they know they can do it. Shoot a few of them in the fields, force them to experience the damage, confiscate their lands etc. and they'll get the message. It's war. This could be stopped in a few days with some leadership. It's disgusting. If the Thais don't care and the government doesn't care, then screw them. it's not worth getting aggravated about. Foreigners should just leave and let these people enjoy the death spiral.

If you are thinking you will get some respite by taking a bus to Chiang Mai, you should probably read the current comments in the Chiang Mai Forum. They say today is their worst day yet.

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There needs to be immediate action now, even if it means using live fire on the people setting the fires. Yes, live fire. Would you let an arsonist burn your house down or poison you? The army has all sorts of helicopters, personnel and vehicles at its disposal. It needs to deploys and stop this now. The people setting the fires know what they are doing is wrong and they have been told to stop. They don't give a sh*t, because they know they can do it. Shoot a few of them in the fields, force them to experience the damage, confiscate their lands etc. and they'll get the message. It's war. This could be stopped in a few days with some leadership. It's disgusting. If the Thais don't care and the government doesn't care, then screw them. it's not worth getting aggravated about. Foreigners should just leave and let these people enjoy the death spiral.

This idea is just crazy, Geriatrickid. You need to think things through a bit more, and learn from history.

The people doing the burn-off are more exposed to the smoke and particulate carbon than people who live in cities some distance away. The health of these farmers is probably not affected as much as those who live in the cities, because the farmers lead a more healthy lifestyle with constant physical exercise, and possibly because the pollution they are exposed to is not compounded with exhaust fumes from motor vehicles and coal-fired power stations.

If the Thai government were to impose a hard crack-down on burn-off practices, sending helicopters with police or army personnel to areas that have been set on fire, to arrest the perpetrators and bring them to trial, I can imagine an enormous build-up of resentment amongst surrounding community members in the area.

You might think such action is quite reasonable, but the farmers might not. It's the perception that counts. If any group feels unfairly discriminated against, then disastrous consequences can follow.

I'll give one specific example; the current situation in Nepal. Almost a year ago, Nepal had a devastating earthquake resulting in significant loss of life and a huge number of homes destroyed. International aid came to the rescue and the country was gradually recovering.

About 6 months after the earthquake, the Nepalese government ratified its new constitution, which had been a matter of continuing discussion for a number of years.

Unfortunately, an ethnic group called the Madhesi, who occupied an area in Nepal adjoining India, felt the new constitution discriminated against them. They got angry. Protests resulted. The police and army cracked down. A few deaths resulted. The conflict escalated. The Madhesi in retaliation began attacking the Indian fuel tankers which passed through their province adjoining the Indian border, and which was the main source of fuel for the whole of Nepal. The Indian government advised the drivers of fuel tankers to avoid Nepal for their own safety. As a result, for several months, up to and including the present time, Nepal has suffered from an extreme shortage of fuel.

Aid supplies destined for remote communities were not able to be delivered. Tourism fell off because hotels couldn't even get the gas in order to cook breakfast. What a disaster! And all because of a perception amongst a particular group that they had been discriminated against. It's the perception that counts.

For those who are interested in details of the Madhesi problem, I've attached a couple of links.

http://www.madhesiyouth.com/political/why-madhesi-resentment-against-the-constitution/

http://www.idsa.in/idsacomments/NepalsNewConstitution_hbjha_240915

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Absolutely right in criticizing me. I will be evacuating the 27th at the latest Landing at the airport today was unbelievable. Almost no visibility and you could smell the cinders. Now in Chiang Rai, the air is thick. I walked over to that joke of a temporary bus station to see if I could get a ticket to Chiang Mai asap, I give credit to the buses for turning off the bus engines. I haven't experienced anything like this before, and it's not being treated as the public health crisis that it is. The government isn't being honest on how dangerous, deadly and damaging the air quality is. There needs to be immediate action now, even if it means using live fire on the people setting the fires. Yes, live fire. Would you let an arsonist burn your house down or poison you? The army has all sorts of helicopters, personnel and vehicles at its disposal. It needs to deploys and stop this now. The people setting the fires know what they are doing is wrong and they have been told to stop. They don't give a sh*t, because they know they can do it. Shoot a few of them in the fields, force them to experience the damage, confiscate their lands etc. and they'll get the message. It's war. This could be stopped in a few days with some leadership. It's disgusting. If the Thais don't care and the government doesn't care, then screw them. it's not worth getting aggravated about. Foreigners should just leave and let these people enjoy the death spiral.

If you are thinking you will get some respite by taking a bus to Chiang Mai, you should probably read the current comments in the Chiang Mai Forum. They say today is their worst day yet.

Yeap, really bad in Chiang Mai today. I also checked the CR AQI and miraculously, the air appears excellent now. I guess all that bad CR smoke has migrated down to CM. Lucky us.

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1200hr

36t Chiang Mai

PM2.5 = 207 ug/m3

Looks like the smoke got blown Southwards, due to the high pressure system descending from China.

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Yes, it looks like I am being heavy fisted. However, I do appreciate who and what is involved and responsible. Years after year, education and information was provided. Year after year, the media was filled with the stories of the costs of the burning. Year after year, warnings were given to many of the land users who are also poachers and land encroachers to stop their burning. Year after year, threats were made with no enforcement. How many people have ever been charged and convicted? This situation has been in crisis mode since the 90's. It just gets worse.

The army is very good at enforcing its ban on public gatherings in many Issan villages. It is good at imposing curfews and roadblocks and of searching alleged political agitator's homes. Yet, it cannot undertake field surveillance, nor stop the very noticeable arson. How difficult is it to enforce the current laws on the books and to hold the land holders responsible for the burning?

Apparently, it's quite alright for the arsonists to slowly kill people and destroy the environment. all because it isn't an immediate act. What would your reaction be to my burning tires next door to your home or sending toxic waste your way such that it poisoned you? When people are engaged in violent acts which do harm, it is morally permissible to stop them from doing so. A few dead arsonists will make it clear that arson is bad. There will be no uprisings, no massive protests as the majority of people hate the arsonists. The reality is that people do nothing when more egregious actions are taken. Unlikely anyone will be concerned about a few angry arsonist families.

What isn't being discussed is that the burning is occurring in areas which are supposedly protected lands. You know those steep mountain slopes? Sorry, but much of it is reportedly Crown land and subject of years of encroachment and ownership dispute. Squatted on first, and then burnt.

Yea, yea, I know. Not my country, not my business. very true.

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Judging from the likes given to some posts, hate and violence have found supporters here in Chiang Rai. Fortunately it is not up to you guys.blink.png

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Judging from the likes given to some posts, hate and violence have found supporters here in Chiang Rai. Fortunately it is not up to you guys.blink.png

A tad judgemental and melodramatic, wouldn't you say?

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Judging from the likes given to some posts, hate and violence have found supporters here in Chiang Rai. Fortunately it is not up to you guys.blink.png

It isn't hateful nor violent to protect oneself and others from an assault. I am up here to see first hand some things. Trust me when I say it wasn't my idea, nor my wish. One doesn't pop in to CEI for a night at a brothel.

Yes, you are right, none of us can do anything directly. However, I'd say the handling of this year's burning is going to be a factor in some investment decisions.

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I get Geri kid's astonishment at what is going on here. But I think he sees the villagers as heartless beasts who are inflicting this condition on the rest of us just because they can. Actually they hate the smoke too, but they see it as a necessary evil because they want to plant a crop and get paid. Composting a mountainside is beyond their understanding and is far too labor intensive to trump a 2 litre bottle of diesel and a lighter. The right direction for change lies in deducing the right methods and teaching the people how to clear their land in a sensible and renewable manner. Or how to use permaculture and work with the natural elements. But people aren't going to know how to do it different just because Geri got on a bus and didn't like what he saw.

They need to be shown and if it is uneconomical to do it better, in a healthy way. The government (or better yet CP) needs to provide incentives.

Until then, locking up and shooting peasant farmers, trying to scratch together enough money to feed their kids, is not going to do more than provide a scapegoat the for millions of others who will continue to slash and burn.

PS: in my part of Chiang Rai, I haven't seen a single burning field since the ban started about 5 weeks ago. In fact even when I have travelled further out, there is no burning anywhere here. Yet today visibility was hardly more than a kilometre. So I know for sure, A lot of this stuff is coming out of Burma. And what can be done about that?

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What would your reaction be to my burning tires next door to your home or sending toxic waste your way such that it poisoned you?

I'd probably advise you that it would be even more dangerous for your health than for mine because you would be closer to the toxic fumes.

The practice of 'slash and burn' goes back many centuries. It's traditional and is not correctly described as 'arson' which is a malicious act intended to cause harm.

The solutions are clear. Rather than spend huge amounts of money on police, helicopters, court cases and prison, plus the creation of new problems of deep resentment and fight-back, resulting in yet more expense in tackling the insurgency, let's act more intelligently and spend that money on education on alternative methods of agriculture, and the provision of cheap, subsidised biochar kilns, biomass shredders, and free instruction on permaculture and hugelkultur methods of farming.

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This is a serious issue with no simple easy solutions but you wouldn’t know that by the one-liners regurgitated on to this page. It involves the livelihood of some of the poorest members of society, intertwined with the greed of some of the largest corporations.

Without affordable alternatives to burning, what good does it do to threaten a farmer who is already in debt up to his eyeballs, with little else to lose? His only real alternative is to be more devious in an attempt to avoid getting caught.
What makes more sense, to go after millions of poor farmers with small backyard burns or a couple of major corporations contracting out millions of rai of corn production and subsequent burning. This won’t be solved overnight or without a comprehensive plan to deal with both ends of the supply and demand chain.

Affordable is to leave the vegitation on or in the ground where it will eventually provide soil nutrition Regards Angiolo

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PS: in my part of Chiang Rai, I haven't seen a single burning field since the ban started about 5 weeks ago. In fact even when I have travelled further out, there is no burning anywhere here. Yet today visibility was hardly more than a kilometre. So I know for sure, A lot of this stuff is coming out of Burma. And what can be done about that?

Probably Laos as well. Attached is a detailed map showing the recent fires during a 7 day period. The whole region which includes Laos, Myanmar and Northern Thailand seems all equally bad.

post-118979-0-79280300-1458907901_thumb.

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