The Kuala Lumpur city skyline was shrouded in haze at 12pm on Sunday. - RAYMOND OOI/ The Star
PETALING JAYA: Three areas - Sibu (Sarawak), Port Klang in Selangor and Seri Manjung in Perak - have recorded unhealthy Air Pollutant Index (API) readings of 176, 116 and 108 respectively.
The Natural Resources and Environment Ministry, in a statement, said the readings, taken at 1pm on Sunday showed 35 areas recorded “moderate” air quality while 13 other areas recorded “healthy” readings.
The latest API readings can be seen at http://apims.doe.gov.my
“The South West Monsoon currently experienced by the country is expected to continue until September 2014,” said the ministry in the statement.
According to the ASEAN Specialised Meteorological Centre (ASMC) based in Singapore on July 26, satelite images from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) detected 74 hotspots in Sumatra, Indonesia while the hotspots in Kalimantan, Indonesia dropped to 126 hotspot compared to 157 hotspot on July 25 2014 .
The regional haze map issued by ASMC showed movement of smoke from fire areas in Riau Sumatera and West Kalimantan, Indonesia.
“It also showed the movement of moderate haze smoke to the interior of the west coast of the Peninsula and the the south of Sarawak.
“Another 50 hotspot have been detected in Malaysia - seven in Sabah and 43 in Sarawak.
“All the hotspots detected in the country will be investigated and necessary enforcement action will be taken,” said the ministry in the statement.
Based on investigations by the Department of Environment (DOE), as of July 26, 4408 cases of open burning have been detected so far this year.
During the same period, 315 open burning cases have been compounded while warning notices have been issued for 101 cases.
“For another 45 cases, investigation papers have already been opened for prosecution,” it said.
The public is urged to report any any cases of open burning to the Fire and Rescue Department by calling 999 and to the DOE at 1-800-88-2727.