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Thai government approves 8 billion baht scheme to tackle PM2.5 pollution


webfact

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To mitigate the escalating PM2.5 pollution problem, the government recently approved a scheme worth 8 billion baht designed to incentivise sugarcane farmers to modify their harvesting methods.

 

The initiative, which is set to be implemented in the 2022/23 harvest year, encourages farmers to cut fresh sugarcane without burning the residue, a practice known to be a significant contributor to the pollution issue.

 

The state-owned Bank for Agricultural and Agricultural Cooperatives will be the source of the funding for the scheme, confirmed Deputy Spokesperson for the Government Rudklao Suwankiri. Participating farmers who harvest their crops without burning the residue will receive a compensation of 120 baht per tonne.

 

This decision by the Cabinet aligns with a resolution made during a meeting of the Cane and Sugar Board, led by the permanent secretary of the Industry Ministry on September 28. The resolution called for the support of sugarcane farmers via a budget not exceeding 8 billion baht.


The government is acutely aware of the pressing need to tackle the PM2.5 pollution problem, which worsens annually and impacts the health of millions of individuals, explained Rudklao. The government has therefore opted to incentivise agricultural practices that help in addressing this issue, coupled with seeking increased cooperation with neighbouring countries.

 

by Alex Morgan 

PHOTO: via food print

 

Full story: The Thaiger 2023-12-05

 

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1 hour ago, webfact said:

 

The initiative, which is set to be implemented in the 2022/23 harvest year, encourages farmers to cut fresh sugarcane without burning the residue, a practice known to be a significant contributor to the pollution issue.

Good luck with this one, Malaysia also having the same problems

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Don't forget to take the real beneficiaries of all those burning fields into the equation - the faster the next crop can be planted, the faster the result can be harvested. But nobody wants to mess with the Phooyai in the feed mill industry here in Thailand ..... 

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2 hours ago, webfact said:

designed to incentivise sugarcane farmers

 

IMO, not only sugar cane farmers but sweet corn/maize farmers who burn the stalks and leaves after harvesting the cobs, also folk who set fire to forests in readiness for the harvesting of the small black button mushrooms!

 

Burning corn/maize stalks (stock photo)

 

image.png.353e8b2653c05c1bb04d874a85a0be41.png

 

The much sought after Hed Thob button mushrooms, after the burning season

 

image.png.5a23e6fcb39b2abd9b779c9461c25923.png

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1 hour ago, PETERTHEEATER said:

8 billion would buy a lot of cane cutting machines and maintenance support to assign to the growing areas for common use.

As to 'burning', I think human cutters will only cut fields where the standing cane has been flash burned to remove the sharp leaves. Machines will cut as is but what is cut will be heavier and larger in volume due to the redundant foiliage. Paying the grower by weight is a loser for the miller?

Then there remains the stubble which, presumably, the grower burns again before ploughing in.

Is that the process?

 

 

Take the money and still burn.. farmer says a farang threw a cigarette butt out of the car window.

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3 hours ago, digger70 said:

Why pay the farmers for Not burning their Trash?

In Australia they made this change to Green harvesting and No trash burning 20 years ago. the farmers didn't get paid for that.

 

Green harvest is the alternative to sugarcane pre-harvest burning. It is done by mechanical harvesting machines that have fans to clean the leaves and tops from the stalks before cutting the stalks, leaving the biomass on the ground. The fans can operate to clean some or all of the leaves from the stalks, leaving a modest blanket that can be left on the ground. A portion of the leaves can be transported with the cane to be stripped off at the mill for various uses. The biomass trash blanket, about 60 percent that is left on the ground, restores organic carbon, nitrogen, and other essential chemical elements to the soil, which reduces the cost of added fertilizer that can amount to between 325 and 421 pounds per acre per year. Further, the biomass blanket prevents weed growth and reduces weed control costs by 35 percent. The trash blanket reduces soil erosion, retains soil moisture, and reduces irrigation costs by 10 percent.

Green Harvest will eliminate the health issues caused by sugarcane burning. This cane burning increases the number of incidents of respiratory problems, primarily asthma hospital admissions, in sugarcane farming regions. The average annual income in the affected towns is $26,000, so people relocating to a safe location is not an affordable solution, especially for the elderly. I lived in Wellington during the mid-1980s to early 1990s, about 30 miles from the sugarcane burning, and the air was thick with ash and acrid smoke. Our screened-in porch required continuous cleaning.

Green harvest will improve air quality, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, reduce herbicide use, and water runoff. It will also reduce big Sugar’s lobbying cost from $11 million per year. There is currently a lawsuit requiring 100 percent green harvest by Big Sugar, in the EAA, by some local residents. Let’s hope it comes to fruition.

Thank you....Just what they need; an existing scheme to replicate as they probably havent a clue how to go about this.Please forward to the relevant Thai Department....or PM Sretta

Edited by SunsetT
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2 hours ago, SunsetT said:

Thank you....Just what they need; an existing scheme to replicate as they probably havent a clue how to go about this.Please forward to the relevant Thai Department....or PM Sretta

Ok done,,,, I send this to the PM permanent secretary office.  

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21 hours ago, digger70 said:

There is currently a lawsuit requiring 100 percent green harvest by Big Sugar, in the EAA, by some local residents. Let’s hope it comes to fruition.

It won't in Thailand.  A large plume of smoke is easily visible through the widows of every police station here but not one cop will leave their A/C offices to deal with it.

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1 hour ago, mikebell said:

It won't in Thailand.  A large plume of smoke is easily visible through the widows of every police station here but not one cop will leave their A/C offices to deal with it.

 

With respect and from my experience when I lived in Isaan, not surprising when the cops and their families own the farmland!

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1 minute ago, daveAustin said:

They could of course ensure the police do their jobs and jail the perpetrators… FOR FREE!

Many of the perps are hill tribe people, jailing them will alienate the police and make relations worse. The other problem is that most often, the police come from communities where these perps live and they understand what they are doing and why, even if they don't fully understand the negatives of burning. It's a social problem and an economic problem.

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