Air pollution problems in Thailand

Anything and everything about Thailand
Post Reply
User avatar
Gaybutton
Posts: 15625
Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 11:21 am
Location: Thailand
Has thanked: 1 time
Been thanked: 601 times

Re: Air pollution problems in Bangkok

Post by Gaybutton » Wed Jan 16, 2019 7:31 pm

Undaunted wrote:the diesel buses that take them around are a pollution nightmare. One only needs to be behind one to appreciate the fumes and black smoke and it is not like there are only a few of them.
There are so many of those buses that it's difficult to count them all. Where do they take all those Chinese tourists anyway?

User avatar
Undaunted
Posts: 1602
Joined: Fri Aug 12, 2016 8:47 am
Has thanked: 15 times
Been thanked: 226 times

Re: Air pollution problems in Bangkok

Post by Undaunted » Wed Jan 16, 2019 8:08 pm

Gaybutton wrote: There are so many of those buses that it's difficult to count them all. Where do they take all those Chinese tourists anyway?
They go from Bali Hai pier to Koh Larn, Nong Nooch Gardens, Chinese Temple and for some reason the beach in central Pattaya is a favorite and other places I am unaware of.
"In the land of the blind the one eyed man is king"

fountainhall
Posts: 2153
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2017 11:45 am
Location: Bangkok
Has thanked: 172 times
Been thanked: 495 times

Re: Air pollution problems in Bangkok

Post by fountainhall » Thu Jan 17, 2019 2:42 pm

Today is even clearer than yesterday. Bright sunshine this afternoon, a lot of blue sky and a light breeze blowing the tops of the trees. I haven't been out yet but it seems like a very pleasant day.

Dodger
Posts: 935
Joined: Sun Aug 01, 2010 2:58 am
Has thanked: 7 times
Been thanked: 196 times

Re: Air pollution problems in Bangkok

Post by Dodger » Thu Jan 17, 2019 3:38 pm

Those fire-breathing dragons disguised as tour buses filled with Chinese seem to be making stops all along the eastern coastline from Naklua to Rayong as prearranged by the tour company's.

I have been routinely enjoying my early morning motor bike rides traveling as far North as Si Racha and South to Rayong and have been witnessing the expansion of these bus routes first-hand. The tour companies make discounted package deals with the lower-end (cheaper) hotels and restaurants along the coastline and unload these flocks of voyeuristic penguins everywhere.

Last June was the first time I witnessed one of these buses making its way down the promenade in little-old-Bang Saray and couldn't believe my eyes. Somehow the driver managed to squeeze this 2 story titanic monster down one of the tiny sois which runs along the ocean just past the fishing docks and unloaded what appeared to be 200 Chinese right in front of a resort which I always thought was closed. Anyway, this was to be followed by another 3 or 4 buses that made their showing in Bang Saray over the next few weeks which had everyone pissed. Here you are standing in middle of the morning fish market and having these buses spewing huge plumes of black smoke all over the place. I was told that the Thai Navy may have stepped in and I haven't seen another tour bus here since.

User avatar
Gaybutton
Posts: 15625
Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 11:21 am
Location: Thailand
Has thanked: 1 time
Been thanked: 601 times

Re: Air pollution problems in Bangkok

Post by Gaybutton » Thu Jan 17, 2019 4:16 pm

Dodger wrote:these buses spewing huge plumes of black smoke all over the place.
I believe those buses are among the most major sources of the air pollution, if not the major source. The fact that there seems to be no enforcement of emission standards on these buses is on my "I Don't Get It List."

Thailand is making a serious effort to attract these Chinese tourists - the very same tourists who have to be given pamphlets explaining how to behave. Many of these clueless people have caused problems in Thailand by their behavior, but for whatever reason Thailand seems to want them anyway. I don't understand why. As far as I can tell they spend as little money as they can get away with. Is Thailand really making an enormous amount of money by their presence?

Obviously the tour bus problems are not the fault of the tourists themselves, but why Thai authorities seem to just look the other way at the problems such as the pollution, the traffic problems, parking the buses anywhere they please despite the existence of designated bus parking areas, incompetent bus drivers, etc. goes beyond me.

When noticeable numbers of these tour buses first started appearing it was not much more than an occasional annoyance. But now there are so many, and the number of buses continues to grow, it has gone far beyond being an annoyance and has reached the level of serious problem - a problem the authorities appear to be perfectly content to ignore.

fountainhall
Posts: 2153
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2017 11:45 am
Location: Bangkok
Has thanked: 172 times
Been thanked: 495 times

Re: Air pollution problems in Bangkok

Post by fountainhall » Thu Jan 17, 2019 4:49 pm

These monsters appeared in Bangkok well over a year ago. One problem is they ferry tourists to and from hotels, including to the Ibis Hotel just across from the Malaysia Hotel. As anyone who knows that area is aware, the roads around there are very narrow. So the buses make their way down Sathorn Soi 1, cause a mini-jam as they ever so slowly manoeuvre to turn first into Ngamduplee and a much bigger one getting into Sribumphen. Then traffic in all directions has to come to a stop whilst they attempt to back into the Ibis car park entrance. They should be banned from streets below a certain width IMHO!

User avatar
Jun
Posts: 2073
Joined: Sun Aug 01, 2010 10:20 pm
Has thanked: 175 times
Been thanked: 106 times

Re: Air pollution problems in Bangkok

Post by Jun » Thu Jan 17, 2019 5:45 pm

I presume the tour operators make money from the allegedly cheap Chinese package tours. The benefit to wider society doesn't matter much to tour operators, as long as they are making money.

Incidentally, Chinese visitors to Europe are big spenders in the high end stores, such as Harrods and so on. Obviously Thailand could offer a much cheaper holiday package, due to proximity and lower costs, so perhaps this results in many low end tourists.

Also, the Chinese mentality seems to be to cram as much as possible into a short trip. The idea seems to be to stay somewhere just long enough to take the photos. I recall some Chinese students arranging a trip from the UK lasting 8 days. They were doing Paris, Barcelona, Geneva and wanted one other destination. My advice was to do Rome and delete Geneva. They did the lot. I would want time off to rest after that.

Whilst their damn tour buses seem to be a big polluter in Pattaya, I doubt they have a significant percentage contribution in Bangkok.

fountainhall
Posts: 2153
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2017 11:45 am
Location: Bangkok
Has thanked: 172 times
Been thanked: 495 times

Re: Air pollution problems in Bangkok

Post by fountainhall » Thu Jan 17, 2019 6:03 pm

Jun's post reminds me of a movie from my younger days - "It it's Tuesday, it must be Belgium"! Only this was about a group of American tourists 'doing' a bus tour of 9 European countries in 18 days. Maybe things haven't changed so much over the years!

gera
Posts: 73
Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2018 6:46 pm
Been thanked: 1 time

Re: Air pollution problems in Bangkok

Post by gera » Thu Jan 17, 2019 7:36 pm

Gaybutton wrote:for whatever reason Thailand seems to want them anyway. I don't understand why.
I have just returned from Pattaya and I was struck by the speed the Chinese businesses taking over the city. Pattaya follows the route of Sihanoukville which is completely taken over by Chinese. It is quite amazing development taking into account the xenophobic nature of ruling Thai elite. Obviously, they somehow (and I understand why) have a warm spot for Chinese.

Dodger
Posts: 935
Joined: Sun Aug 01, 2010 2:58 am
Has thanked: 7 times
Been thanked: 196 times

Re: Air pollution problems in Bangkok

Post by Dodger » Fri Jan 18, 2019 10:09 am

Tour operators attract Chinese tour groups with super-cheap packages that promise free food and accommodation, but once in Thailand, the travelers are coerced into buying goods and services at exorbitant rates from Chinese-run operations. As the money is mostly channeled back to China, the local economy gains little from the surge in Chinese tourists even though they soak up local resources.

The only reason the Chinese are coming here is because it's close and cheap. The Thai owned/operated tour bus companies are the only ones I can really see who are making money even at the discounted rates being offered to the Chinese. There are hundreds of Thai tour bus company's who you can bet are all competing for the Chinese business and they could care less about the environmental impact. TAT likes the Chinese numbers rolling in as well for the mere fact that it gives the impression that tourism is increasing due to TAT sponsored programs being so successful when in reality that couldn't be farther from the truth. In the mean time, these Black Smoke Monsters posing as tour buses keep polluting the environment, clogging up the roadways and making the coastline resemble a bus parking lot at a super bowl game.

They (the Thais) maintain their tour buses in exactly the same manner as they maintain everything else. The Thai traffic police are paid less than a 7/11 clerk and probably don't know what the laws are regarding vehicle emissions let alone care enough to do anything about it.

Every time I see a horde of Chinese walk off the bus in Jomtien flocking on the edge of the road across from the ocean they all seen to have this expression on their faces like...what do we do now and the tour bus driver stands there wiping his brow with an expression on his face like...you just paid me to get you here.

Post Reply