With only four APIMS devices to measure air quality in Johor, the Minister of Environment must show greater commitment to tackle the haze problem

The Ministry of Environment must show greater commitment to tackle the haze problem that has reached "Dangerous" level reading on the Air Pollutant Index (API), especially since there are only four locations in Johor for the Air Pollutant Index Management System (APIMS). The four APIMS remote sensing devices in Johor are located in Larkin Lama, Muar, Pasir Gudang, and Kota Tinggi.

When Muar had to close its schools in the afternoon session today due to an API level of 383 (*) , nearby Kluang residents were concerned to measure the current level of air pollution, which could already be seen to have deteriorated. However, the Meteorological Department does not have remote sensing devices in Kluang to measure the Air Pollutant Index.

* The Department of Environment lists API levels from 51 to 100 as moderate, 101 to 200 as unhealthy, and 201 to 300 as very unhealthy. Levels above 301 are dangerous.

Penang, Negeri Sembilan, Kedah, Pahang and Terengganu have 3 APIMS device locations. Johor as the second biggest state in Peninsular Malaysia in terms of land size, should have more APIMS device locations to measure and monitor air pollution, particularly due to Johor's proximity to our known forest-fire-prone neighbour, Indonesia.

The Minister of Natural Resources and Environment, Datuk Seri G. Palanivel must consider increasing the number of APIMS Devices in Johor to monitor the quality of air and take measures to address the haze problems, further details of which I will reveal tomorrow.

Table: Air Pollutant Index Management System (APIMS) Devices in Malaysia, by Location

Johor 4
Perlis 1
Kelantan 2
Melaka 2
Kedah 3
Negeri Sembilan 3
Pahang 3
Penang 3
Terengganu 3
Sabah 4
Kuala Lumpur 4
Perak 5
Selangor 5
Sarawak 10

* Source: Department of Environment, Ministry of Environment

Liew Chin Tong DAP Political Education Director & MP for Kluang