PETALING JAYA: There have been more than 2,000 cases of open burning nationwide from January till last Saturday.
Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said a total of 2,262 cases of open burning had been detected by the Department of Environment (DOE).
Most of the cases, said Dr Wan Junaidi, involved forests (300 cases), bushes (515), construction sites (48), landfill sites (70), industrial areas (15), agricultural land (589) and other small open burning cases (725).
He said the DOE was monitoring the air quality nationwide.
“Hotspots in Sumatra and Kalimantan, Indonesia, that are still active can cause transboundary haze to reach the west coast of Peninsular Malaysia and Sarawak,” said Dr Wan Junaidi in a statement yesterday.
The DOE, he said, had increased preventive efforts on open burning activities.
One of the measures taken is activating the Open Burning Prevention Action Plan since Jan 12 that includes land surveillance and enforcement on areas identified, court action and issuance of compounds.
Other measures include monitoring of areas that can catch fire easily and aerial surveillance to prevent burning in forest and rural areas.
Dr Wan Junaidi said the DOE had issued compounds, amounting to RM233,566, for 208 cases from January till August.
As of 5pm yesterday the Air Pollution Index reading in most cities across the country were “healthy” and “moderate”.