Malaysia: Hot spots in areas in neighbouring Sumatra causing API to peak

Desiree Tresa Gasper The Star 11 Sep 12

JOHOR BARU: Hot spots in 152 areas in Sumatra are causing the Air Pollutant Index (API) especially in Pasir Gudang to peak to high levels especially over the last few days.

Department of Environment director-general Halimah Hassan said the recent hazy conditions experienced in Pasir Gudang were related to trans-boundary factors.

“The regional haze map showed slight hazy conditions in the Southern part of Sumatra on Sept 4.

“We also noticed that 152 hot spots were detected in various parts of Sumatra which could have contributed to the deteriorating air quality,” she said when speaking to StarMetro.

Halimah added that due to the prevailing South West monsoon, it takes a couple of days before the haze reaches Malaysia.

“The air quality will slowly deteriorate in certain parts of the country depending on the wind direction,” she said adding that the highest API readings in the past few days was recorded in Pasir Gudang.

The department’s Air Pollutant Index Management System showed that the readings in Pasir Gudang had been gradually increasing since last Wednesday.

The API in Pasir Gudang was recorded at 92 at around 7am on Friday.

Halimah added that scattered rains however, have helped reduce the API readings in Pasir Gudang to 83 at 5pm on Friday.

Checks by StarMetro revealed that the API readings were not peaking in any other areas in the country.

Those who want to keep tabs on the air quality can log on to the department’s website at or can contact the department’s hotline at 1 800 88 2727.