Thursday June 28, 2012
Miri’s satellite town records ‘very unhealthy’ API
KUCHING: The air pollutant index (API) in ILP Miri shot to “very unhealthy” level with readings hovering between 220 and 250.
Institut Latihan Perindustrian (ILP) Miri is where the API station is located. The area is known as Permyjaya, a satellite township 14km from Miri city.
The institute is located near the peat fires which have been raging the northern areas of Miri covering Permyjaya, Tudan and Kuala Baram areas in the past 10 days or so.
According to the Department of Environment’s website yesterday, at 7am, 11am and 5pm, the API readings in ILP Miri were 245, 219 and 240, whereas in Miri, the readings were at moderate levels, between 53 and 57. On Tuesday, the API readings taken from ILP Miri were between 157 and 158, which meant “unhealthy.”
Other divisions in Sarawak recorded “healthy” and “moderate” API levels with readings between 35 and 60 throughout the day.
The Meteorological Service Singapore’s website showed that 12 hotspots were detected in Borneo by NOAA Satellite at 6.29am yesterday.
Natural Resources and Environment Board (NREB) controller Peter Sawal told The Star that the poor air quality in ILP Miri area was not due to transboundary haze.
“As all regions in Sarawak recorded favourable API readings except in Miri especially at ILP areas. High number of hotspots and localised peat fires are detected in Miri-Kuala Baram areas.”
Generally, Malaysian Meteoro- logical Services Department forecast that the dry weather would continue to persist throughout the state.
However, it forecast that Miri would have isolated rains over the coastal areas in the morning and isolated showers in the afternoon with 50% of precipitation today and 20% tomorrow.
The department also expected either isolated showers or thunderstorms in other divisions such as Kuching, Bintulu and Sibu in the afternoon today and tomorrow with 20% to 60% chance of precipitation.
The State Disaster Relief Committee chaired by Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Alfred Jabu Numpang held a lengthy closed-door meeting with all Residents and heads of departments yesterday afternoon to deliberate on the drought and haze situation. It was learnt that all the Residents briefed the minister on the ground situation.