What was the major cause of air pollution during the Indonesian fires in 1997?

What was the major cause of air pollution during the Indonesian fires in 1997?

The 1997 Southeast Asian haze was caused mainly by slash-and-burn techniques adopted by farmers in Indonesia. Slash and burn has been extensively used for many years as the cheapest and easiest means to clear the lands for traditional agriculture.

Why did the Indonesian fires of 1997 1998 have such a widespread impact?

The land use changes that led to the fires were a combination of industrial-scale logging, draining peatlands for conversion to oil palm and fast-growing tree plantations, and a massive government program to drain swamps and convert them to rice paddies. A total of 240 people perished in the wildfires.

When did haze started in Singapore?

There were sporadic reports of haze over Singapore in the 1980s. During that period, the haze was generally caused by dry weather conditions that increased the amount of dust in the air,13 occasional bushfires in Singapore14 and forest fires in Indonesia.

How did haze affect Singapore?

Long-term exposure can potentially lead to the development of chronic bronchitis, reduced lung functions, an increased risk of cancer and even premature death. In Singapore, any exposure to haze is generally short-term in nature as Singapore does not experience haze all throughout the year.

What eventually stopped the fires that burned out of control in 1997 in Southeast Asia?

During the first nine months of 1997, the government approved 750,000 acres (300,000 ha) of primary rainforest for conversion to palm-oil plantations. The fires set for forest clearing burn every year, but are usually extinguished by monsoon rains that once fell predictably every November.

Where did haze come from?

Haze is caused when sunlight encounters tiny pollution particles in the air. Some light is absorbed by particles. Other light is scattered away before it reaches an observer. More pollutants mean more absorption and scattering of light, which reduce the clarity and color of what we see.

Which year has most forest fire in Asia?

In 1991, fires burned more than 125,000 acres (50,000 ha) of forest.

Is Indonesia still burning forest?

As of the end of November, fires had burned 353,222 hectares (872,831 acres) of land, an area twice the size of London. This is up nearly 16% from the 296,942 hectares (733,759 acres) burned during the whole of 2020, according to official data from the Ministry of Environment and Forestry.

Why is Jakarta always hazy?

Industrial-scale slash-and-burn practices to clear land for agricultural purposes are a major cause of the haze, particularly for palm oil and pulpwood production in the region.

Why do Indonesia burn forest?

Environmental groups argue that Indonesia’s forest fires are a man-made crisis driven largely by corporate greed and weak law enforcement. In Indonesia, stronger environmental safeguards are needed together with greater accountability when companies raze forests and drain peatlands, leaving them vulnerable to fires.

Does haze affect asthma?

Small particles in the air can pass through your nose or mouth and get into your lungs. Airborne particles, found in haze, smoke and airborne dust, present serious air quality problems. People with asthma are at greater risk from breathing in small particles. The particles can make asthma worse.

Is haze harmful to humans?

Haze particles can sometimes affect the heart and lungs, especially in people who already have chronic heart or lung disease e.g. asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), or heart failure. There may be up to one to three days of time between exposure to haze and health effects/ symptoms.

Why is there a 3-hour PSI in Singapore?

This 3-hour PSI is unique to Singapore and was introduced in 1997 to provide additional air quality information which would better reflect a more current air quality situation. In 2016, the 3-hour PSI was phased out on the grounds that the 1-hour PM 2.5 reading was a better indicator of the current air quality.

What is the Singapore Air Quality Index (PSI)?

The Singapore air quality index is the Pollution Standards Index (PSI) – it is an alternative to the Air Quality Index (AQI) that is used in Singapore.

What was the worst pollution in Singapore in 1997?

On Sept 18, 1997, the Pollutant Standards Index (PSI) hit an all-time high of 226 at 10pm, with visibility plummeting to a few hundred metres in the worst-hit western part of Singapore. A pedestrian attempting to cross a street thick with haze in western Singapore on Sept 18, 1997.

Is the PSI the same in all countries?

The PSI has been used in a number of countries including the United States and Singapore. Since 1999, the United States EPA has replaced the Pollution Standards Index (PSI) with the Air Quality Index (AQI) to incorporate new PM2.5 and ozone standards. Prior to 1 April 2014, Singapore published the PSI and the 1-hour PM2.5 reading separately.