We are generating our own haze, says Met Dept

The Star, 26 Feb 2014

KUALA LUMPUR: The causes of the current haze in Malaysia have been identified to be domestic sources such as forest burning, smoke from factories, vehicle emissions and open burning.

Malaysian Meteorological Department (JMM) director-general Datuk Che Gayah Ismail said the haze had no connection with the recent eruption of Mount Sinabung in North Sumatera, Indonesia or other outside factors.

She said the hot and dry weather without any rainfall for several days experienced in the country only made the situation worse.

“This time, the haze is caused by domestic sources and the lack of rainfall has caused such things as gas, dust, ash and particles to float in the atmosphere and not fall down to the earth,” she told Bernama.

The Department’s records showed that the haze was now concentrated in large urban areas with economic and industrial activities as well as a large number of vehicles such as Kuala Lumpur, Selangor (Subang) and Penang (Seberang Perai).

Che Gayah said the temperature this year was high compared to the same period last year, due to the hot and dry weather, and this was expected to continue until the middle of March.

“The haze is still within control, but early measures to prevent it from getting worse should be taken, including avoiding open burning and reduced use of private vehicles on roads,” she said.

The Air Pollution Index recorded by the Department of Environment at noon Wednesday showed that the air quality status in 23 areas was good, and average in 26 others. – Bernama

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