Whatever undesirable we do, the nature will just reflect it. In this case, haze. Haze is a mixture of pollutants like carbon dioxide, toxic gases and other soot particles. It is air-borne and when we inhale it, it can cause different respiratory illnesses.
Haze pollution affected many Southeast Asian countries especially in Indonesia, Singapore and Malaysia. There are cases that other countries like Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam are affected. For most haze cases here in Singapore, it is usually the result of forest fires in Indonesia.
With the gravity of haze, there have been national and regional actions against it.
National acts against haze
The Haze Task Force was created on September 1994. It is comprised of different Singaporean government agencies. The task force aims to defend safety and public health. The task force is also keen on helping Indonesia control burning. The government stockpiled N95 masks and circulated to retail outlets and for the low-income families, the masks are free. Along with the masks, the ministries of health, education and defense always issue health advisories to the public.
Regional acts against haze
The national efforts will not fully succeed if the neighbouring countries ignore it. The good news is that regional efforts were made to curb the fires coming from Indonesia. The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) enforced the Regional Haze Action Plan. The goal is to establish tools that can display forest fires, better management of the fires and solidification of fire fighting capability.
Whenever the government is advising us to limit outdoor activities because PSI levels are too high, we have to comply because it is safe. The fight against haze is not futile unless we do something.