As If Coronavirus Wasn't Enough Thailand Faces Now Huge Forest Fires.

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As If Coronavirus Wasn't Enough Thailand Faces Now Huge Forest Fires

It seems like 2020 can't give us a break.


Numerous villagers and wild animals are dying, and no international support is being offered.



The forest fires are raging in Northern Thailand's forests amid the coronavirus pandemic. Entire villages are at risk, and dozens of local officers dead and the forest's ecosystem is depleting. Forest fires are a seasonal problem for the locals, and the leading cause is deforestation for agricultural reasons.


The fires first started sometime in late March, as they do almost every year and covered in thick smoke in the northern parts of the country. Significant portions of the northern regions are above unhealthy air levels according, to IQAir with Pai being the most critical at 342 US AQI. Almost 10% of the hotspots are located in Chiang Mai, making it the most affected area.


Thai people are trying to inform the world about the serious problem they are facing via social media.


Instagram user Junny is among them. She recently uploaded photos of animals who were injured by the forest fires.
"My account isn't that big but I want to do something for my own country and for Northern Thais. Since only a few people are talking about this in Thailand. No mass media report here," Junny notes, adding that the forest fires began on March 25, 2020, leaving several local officers dead.


What's the reason for these fires?


Several factors could have caused the fires.


Thai government spokeswoman Narumon Pinyosinwat mentioned the recent drought, the wind patterns that occasionally trap polluted air in the northern region, and possibly arson as plausible causes. Another factor, according to her statement, is agribusiness, especially slash-and-burn practices.


The Thai space agency, Geo-Informatics and Space Technology Development Agency (GISTDA), reports that there were 3,809 hotspots in Thailand, 5,061 in Laos, and 10,061 more in Myanmar as of March 28, 2020.


What measures are taken?


At the moment, Thailand has to face two major problems and fight two life-threatening battles at the same time; against COVID-19 pandemic and against forest fires.


Several helicopters, together with drones and paragliders, have been deployed to affected areas. Some 80 soldiers too have been ordered to detect the fires. The government has also restricted villagers of Hang Dong district from slash-and-burn practices until April 30, 2020.


As If Coronavirus Wasn't Enough Thailand Faces Now Huge Forest Fires

At the same time, villagers are too trying their best to assist fire-fighters. And some of them are opposed to the government spokeswoman sayings.
"We are forest dwellers, nobody wants to lose the forest," Karen villager chief Prue Odochao commented, replying that they're the ones who're most badly affected since the forests are where they get their source of food from.


Furthermore, some villagers have even alleged cronyism, censorship, and bureaucracy as among the major factors that led to these fires.


Why should the world care about these fires?


There are several reasons to raise the world's consciousness about Thailand's forest fires.


As If Coronavirus Wasn't Enough Thailand Faces Now Huge Forest Fires

First of all, when something destroys Earth's lungs, it affects us all.


These forests have unique flora and fauna and are the house of thousands of people and animals. At the same time, the northern region of Thailand is famous, also, about its magnificent ancient temples.


As If Coronavirus Wasn't Enough Thailand Faces Now Huge Forest Fires

It would be devastating to see down in flames such scenic locations with rich culture.


Unfortunately, Thailand is not the only country that's been confronting forest fires this year. Till today, several others, including Australia and Indonesia too, have experienced forest fires.


So the question arises; what are we going to about this?


All photo credits to: bangkokpost.com, chiangmaione.com" target="_blank" & tripsavvy.com

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Thinking Humanity: As If Coronavirus Wasn't Enough Thailand Faces Now Huge Forest Fires.
As If Coronavirus Wasn't Enough Thailand Faces Now Huge Forest Fires.
It seems like 2020 can't give us a break.
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