Finding creative ways to put up with haze

PETALING JAYA: The haze may have put a dampener on the mood of the Malaysian public but some are finding creative ways of combating the condition.

Designers Nattu Adnan and Suresh Tan launched their website Haze Malaysia as a means to educate Malaysians about preparing themselves for hazy skies.

With attractive visuals, the website features news updates on the haze and the Air Pollutant Index levels across the country with data from the Department of Environment.

To drive home the severity of the situation, the website also measures how many cigarettes one would have “smoked” that day based on the level of air pollution.

For instance, with an API at an unhealthy level of 138 that day, one would have “smoked” the equivalent of 6.3 cigarettes.

Tan said the idea for the website came about when he and Nattu went around the city and noticed how Malaysians were unfazed by the haze.

“There were a lot of people out there, on their motorcycles or walking, who weren’t wearing proper protection such as masks.

“We came back and wondered why this was so, especially since news about the haze was well covered (by the media).

“We thought of how we could spread awareness and really show people how bad the air is, ” he said.

Tan and Nattu, who are both in their 30s, are friends and former colleagues.

Malaysians, such as Twitter user Farhan Akmal, have also “battled” the haze situation with good humour.

The photographer had told Malaysians to make Sept 16 “blow back the haze” day, and urged Malaysians to bring out their fans and direct the haze towards Indonesia.“Collectively, we are certain to blow the haze back to Indonesia. Come Malaysians!” he had tweeted.

The tweet instantly went viral, with Twitter users posting photos of electric fans and hand fans.

Another popular video was of a father-and-daughter duo who donned silly masks and used portable mini fans to “blow away” the haze.

Farhan said he had posted the original tweet as satire because he was frustrated when the haze affected his photography work.

“I tweeted it at first as a joke and didn’t expect it to get the attention it got. Once that happened, I played along with it, ” he said.

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