BTS Group partners with BMA and Thai Health in hosting The Air We Share, an exhibition to raise awareness of Bangkok’s pollution problem to spark collective against PM2.5


On Friday, 22 March 2024 at the walkway area of the BTS National Stadium Station, BTS Group, in partnership with the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) and the Thai Health Promotion Foundation (Thai Health), along with various government agencies, public organisations and communities, hosted the Air We Share from the 22nd to 3rd April , an exhibition to raise awareness on the dangers of air pollution, specifically PM2.5, and promote collective action to alleviate the issue with sustainable transport. The opening ceremony was attended by Mr. Chakraphon Tangsutthitham, Deputy Secretary-general to the Prime Minister, Ms. Wantanee Wattana, BMA Permanent Secretary, Mr. Pornphrom N.S. Vikitsreth, Advisor to Governor of Bangkok, Professor Charoen Wattanasin, BTS Group Independent Director and Sustainability Development Committee Member, Mr. Daniel Ross, Chief Investment Officer and Head of Sustainability at BTS Group, Mr. Sumit Srisantithum, Chief Operating Officer of Bangkok Mass Transit System Public Company Limited, and Dr. Chatwut Wangwon, Director of Health Risk Control Section at the Thai Health Promotion Foundation, as a way to collectively launch this 13-day long exhibition to the public. In addition to the panel discussions on the main stage, partners within the clean air network showcased various projects and facilitated workshops to share knowledge and spark engagement on the topic of air quality. This included mini workshops activities, making DIY air purifiers, DIY dust masks, lung health check clinics, booths providing advice on planting air-filtering plants, distributing dust-reducing plants, PM2.5 Bangkok crisis game boards, mini surveys reflecting the voices of Bangkok residents, as well as educational activities on clean lung rooms, sustainable transportation to reduce dust and sustainable lifestyle to address the PM2.5 problems in the Bangkok area.

Mr. Daniel Ross, Chief Investment Officer and Head of Sustainability at BTS Group, expressed that BTS Group is immensely proud to take part in advocating for climate action as well as raising awareness and promoting collective action from the public in alleviating the PM2.5 issue, all for everyone’s right to breathe clean air and improve the overall quality of life.

Since 1999, Mr. Keree Kanjanapas, Chairman of BTS Group Holdings PCL, started operating the BTS SkyTrain with the intention to help solve Bangkok’s traffic congestion problem, which has become more than 50% of the underlying cause for the PM2.5 issue in Bangkok. Despite this, the Company has never wavered from its mission, as a provider of low carbon transportation solutions, to help reduce traffic congestion, pollution and fight climate change. Through all of this, BTS Group is proud to have enabled our passengers to collectively help the country avoid more than 2.1 million tCO2e through modal shift, which is equivalent to the benefit of planting 222 million trees.

By partnering with government agencies such as the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) and the Thai Health Department, in addition to BTS Group subsidiaries, 'The Air We Share' initiative seeks to raise public awareness about protecting against the dangers of PM2.5. and how to collectively address this issue. Through educational exhibitions featuring panel discussions and workshops, the initiative aims to empower individuals to actively play a part in the quest to provide people with the right to breathe clean air. The Company is honoured that the Air We Share exhibition was able to convene everyone to be part of a multi-sectoral effort to raise awareness to the PM2.5 problem, which has imposed significant issues for the public and private sector and the general population. Therefore, we encourage the people of Bangkok to transition to sustainable modes of transportation by utilizing mass public transit systems like the BTS Skytrain, MRT Yellow and Pink Lines, MRT Gold Line, and the BRT. This modal shift promotes collaborative consumption and reduces reliance on private cars, which account for over 50% of pollution in Bangkok. Beyond this, we look forward to future collaborations with the government in developing an inclusive and accessible low-carbon transportation network that supports sustainable transportation and the socio-economic growth for the Thai people."

Dr. Chatwut Wangwon, Director of Health Risk Control Section at the Thai Health Promotion Foundation, stated that the issue with haze and particulate matter pollution in the air are environmental pollutants that has imposed hazardous effects to public health. This aligns with data from the European Environment Agency (EEA), which identifies PM2.5 as harmful to humans when present in significant and prolonged quantities, leading to respiratory irritation and reduced lung function. PM2.5 was ranked as the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking, contributing to over 2 million premature deaths worldwide.

“Most recently, on the night of 20th March 2024, the PM2.5 level in Bangkok exceeded beyond the minimum standard for the year, peaking at 143.5 micrograms per cubic meter (standard limit: 37.5 micrograms per cubic meter). The primary cause was the volatile weather conditions, leading to an increase in PM2.5, especially in types that react well in high humidity environments. The Health Promotion Fund Supporting Office (Thai Health), Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA), BTS Group Holdings Public Company Limited, VGI Public Company Limited, and affiliated networks organized 'The Air We Share' event, an exhibition aimed at raising awareness and community involvement in addressing PM2.5 pollution. The event focuses on providing knowledge and understanding of the causes of particulate matter pollution, enabling individuals to make informed decisions regarding outdoor activities or avoiding activities that contribute to air pollution, leading to community participation in solving the issue. We encourage the public to follow our Facebook page, 'Roo Thun Foon' for more information on this matter.”

Ms. Wanthanee Wattana, BMA Permanent Secretary, claimed that diesel vehicles are the primary source of PM2.5 pollution in Bangkok, accounting for over 50%. To address this issue, Bangkok has implemented more than 30 measures to reduce pollution, such as promoting "Work from Home" campaigns when PM2.5 levels are in the red zone. Additionally, collaborating with the Health Promotion Fund Supporting Office (Thai Health), campaigns have been launched to encourage changing engine oil and car air filters. Furthermore, in collaboration with BTS Group and Thai Health, the pioneering event "The Air We Share" was held in the Pathum Wan district, highlighted on raising awareness to the problems of air pollution as developmental strategy to promote prevention and solution from the source. The aim is to reduce the consumption of private vehicles, fostering collective action from the community, particularly engaging citizens in developing methods to reduce air pollution. This initiative is in line with Bangkok's 365-day pollution reduction plan for the year 2024.