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Peatland News

Title: Air quality expected to improve
Date: 05-Aug-2005
Category: Malaysia
Source/Author: The Star - Nation (Malaysia)
Description: Air quality due to the haze is expected to improve slightly due to less hotspots in Sumatra, Indonesia. Haze in Malaysia has also been contributed by peat fires in Cyberjaya, Selangor.

PETALING JAYA: Air quality around the country is expected to improve slightly because of fewer hotspots in Sumatra.

Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Adenan Satem said that as only 134 hotspots were detected in Sumatra on Wednesday compared to over 500 on Monday, the haze situation was expected to improve.

There was noticeable improvement yesterday as the Department of Environment reported that there were no areas in the country which had unhealthy air quality.

Department director-general Datuk Rosnani Ibarahim said that as of 11am yesterday, good air quality was reported in 14 areas while the remaining areas had moderate air quality.

Areas with good air quality included Indera Mahkota in Pahang, Pengkalan Chepa and Kota Baru in Kelantan, Paka and Kuala Terengganu in Terengganu and Limbang in Sarawak as well as Labuan, Keningau and Sandakan in Sabah.

Other areas – including the west coast – recorded moderate air quality, Rosnani said.

“No areas recorded unhealthy air quality,” she said in a statement yesterday.

Besides the hotspots in Sumatra, she said there were 130 hotspots in Kalimantan, eight in Sabah and Sarawak and nine in Peninsular Malaysia on Wednesday.

Rosnani said the peat fire in Cyberjaya was partially doused while other fires in Saujana Putra in Puchong and Putra Perdana had been put out.

She said visibility in most areas, including Petaling Jaya, Sepang and Subang which suffered from very low visibility for the past two days, was good as it was above 10km.

In Indonesia, Associated Press reported that forest fires and blazes set by local farmers were burning out of control in four provinces.

A Meteorological and Geophysics Agency official known only as Firman said more than 150 hotspots were identified.

“We are very sorry about this,” he said, adding that government workers were focusing most of their attention on the hardest-hit province, Riau. 

Website (URL) http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2005/8/5/nation/11686467&sec=nation

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