Thursday, August 13

Sri Aman air ‘very unhealthy’, API readings above 200 since 3am


Thick smoke billows from a land lot in Kuala Baram, Miri yesterday as forest and peat soil fires continue to rage, causing haze and smog in other parts of the state.

KUCHING: Sri Aman’s air quality has breached ‘very unhealthy’ levels today based on the Department of Environment’s (DOE) air pollutant index (API) reading.

As of 10am, the API reading for the division was 238, the third highest in the state.

It breached the ‘very unhealthy’ API level of 201 and above at 3am this morning at 219 from 183 at 2am, and peaked at 240 at 6am.

The DOE monitoring station that recorded the highest reading at 10am was in Miri at 361; followed by SK Kuala Baram 2, which is also in Miri, at 271.

An API reading of 0 to 50 is healthy, 51-100 (moderate), 101-200 (unhealthy), 201-300 (very unhealthy), and 301 and above (hazardous).

Meanwhile, the Asean Specialised Meteorological Centre (ASMC) in its latest situation update posted on its website last night said hotspot activities were detected in Kalimantan with moderate to dense smoke haze emanating from persistent hotspots clusters near Palangkaraya.

“Some smoke haze from the persistent hotspots in West Kalimantan were blown by the prevailing winds to western Sarawak.

“For the next few days, generally dry weather is forecast over the southern parts of Sumatra and Kalimantan, but there may be isolated showers elsewhere in the southern ASEAN region including Malaysia, and the northern and central parts of Sumatra and Kalimantan. Hotspot activities in Sumatra and Kalimantan are likely to persist,” it said.