Singapore expects possible haze in dry season

Singapore – Singapore’s National Environment Agency will start providing daily haze forecasts and health advisories during the dry season starting from June 16, it said on Friday.

The agency said that the dry season raises the possibility of transboundary haze.

“Over the past few days, drier weather conditions have affected parts of the region, and isolated hotspot activities were visible in parts of Sumatra and Kalimantan. In the coming weeks, the prevailing Southwest Monsoon is expected to strengthen and persist with winds forecast to blow mostly from the southeast or southwest, ” it said.

The Meteorological Service had said earlier that it expects weak to moderate El Nino conditions to develop in the next few months, which could exacerbate the drier and warmer conditions.

Singapore experienced heavy haze during the dry season last year, when the 3-hour Pollutant Standards Index, a gauge of air quality, once hitting a record 401 in June last year due to smog from forest fires in Indonesia, where the practice of slash-and- burn is still sometimes used to clear land for agricultural purposes. Source: Xinhua