Thais sue government over smog and from slash-and- burn farming
11 Apr 2023 12:41pm
An Air Asia plane descends towards Chiang Mai International Airport amid high levels of air pollution in Chiang Mai on April 10, 2023 - AF
In their class action lawsuit, they accuse Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and two state authorities of not doing enough to rein in the crop burning, despite the toxic smog the practice causes, the newspaper said.
The plaintiffs include activists, academics and citizens worried about their health.
In the statistics of the cities with the most air pollution in the world - as monitored by the Swiss air quality technology company IQAir - Chiang Mai has ranked at the top several times recently.
The city, which is popular with tourists because of its famous Buddhist temples, ranked third behind Beijing and New Delhi.
Slash-and-burn methods are common in Thailand and also especially in neighbouring countries such as Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos.
At the end of the dry season, farmers burn down their fields to clear them of undergrowth and weeds, or in the case of sugar cane fields, so that the harvesters can better see where to cut the canes.
Thai authorities banned crop burning in 2019 but the law is often circumvented. The plaintiffs accuse the government of not doing enough to enforce the requirements - BERNAMA
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