Chiang Mai Air Pollution | Burning Smoky Season

As human beings of this planet we all deserve the right to breathe clean air no matter what country we come from, and in March 2018 that right was taken away from me and left a dark stain in my mind forever. 

Every year around mid February through till mid April something tragic happens in the great North of Thailand, large crops of mostly corn are harvested and the foliage that is left behind is burned to clear the land in the most cost effective way possible. The majority of these corn crops are primarily grown to feed animal livestock like pigs, chickens and cow’s.

Chiang Mai Sky 10th February 2018
Chiang Mai Sky 10th February 2018


Chiang Mai Sky 1st March 2018
Chiang Mai Sky 1st March 2018


The smoke from thousands of burning crops across the Northern Thailand, Laos and Myanmar region make its way to the city of Chiang Mai where it becomes trapped amongst the mountain ranges. There is  no breeze to blow it away, very little rainfall or storms, just hot dry climate with thick smoky air.

I have been living in Chiang Mai for 3 years and it had bothered me on previous years but 2018 was particularly bad, I became effected physically, emotionally and energetically. 



Controversial Image drawn by local Thai artist


Staying protected


I avoided going outdoors, the clammy polluted air would get in my skin and my hair burn my eyes and make me feel really lousy. I ran my air purifier 24/7 and stayed inside as much as possible but sometimes that wasn’t enough. Especially for me being a guy that loves to run and play in the outdoors every day. 

I could see how it was effecting the local people, everywhere I went I heard coughing and spluttering, even people in my yoga class were wearing masks during yoga! How can I enjoy yoga, a practice that is focused on deep breathing when every breath I take is toxic. 

After around 4 weeks of living through the burning season It was definitely time to leave, so I made my way to Hua Hin by the beach. Here are some videos below I made documenting my experience.

For more information about the Air Pollution in Northern Thailand please visit these Facebook groups: