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One of the many factors that makes Chiang Mai a desirable place to live is the weather. During the winter months the air is clear and the nights are cool. However, for approximately two months of the year (march and april) the air gets very bad. This is due to “slash and burn farming”. This is where farmers in Northern parts of Thailand burn their fields so that the ashes can fertilise the ground before the next crop rotation. Although the air is bad during slash and burn season, it is still bearable. That said, you may want to buy a face-mask from HomePro or somewhere similar.  

On the 12th of December 2012, the Prime Minister, Yingluck Shinawatra, held a meeting at the International Convention and Exhibition Centre about the problem. She declared that there must be enforced restrictions on slash and burn farming in addition to elevated surveillance in the effected areas. However, this is not the first time that Yingluck has held such a meeting and although there have been anti-burning posters erected throughout Northern Thailand, the smog doesn’t seem to be getting better.  

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