Sunday, August 14, 2005

Choking by the Haze

Look at these photos of Malaysia's Landmarks by Reuters on last Wednesday and Thursday; Kuala Lumpur Tower, KLCC, Putrajaya International Convention Centre and the Telekom Building were all looking hazy at the background

That was then on Thursday, today it’s finally raining cats and dogs! What a relieved. As urged by the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, all Malaysian in regardless of their creed and race prayed for the intervention of the Supreme power to make the situation better. Hear the thunder and the lightning; it’s like songs to your ears. See how desperate people we are :)

Thank you to all Malaysian who had been praying for the haze to go away. That’s the beauty of Malaysia; very unique in its nature of racial integration. In times of hardship we always stay united. This is the true meaning of MERDEKA (independence). The cloud seeding has played an important role for the rain as well. We are already an expert in this technology of generating clouds for rain after long years of practice.

The haze was so bad for the last 7-10 days in Kuala Lumpur and other Klang Valley areas. The worst was on last Thursday, 11th Aug’05. We were actually choking in the smog caused by the wild fire of open burning in Indonesia. I think it was the worst in our history when the Air Pollutant Index (API) reached up to over 500. Under the air quality index, less than 50 is good, 51-100 is moderate, 101-200 is unhealthy, 200-300 is very unhealthy and more than 300 is hazardous. Visibility was reduced to less than 500 meters. We could have died man!

I was working on Thursday at an office in Bangsar. I could actually see the smog penetrating into the office blurring my vision. It was so bad; everyone had to wear the respiratory mask. I didn’t even want to go out on Friday just to avoid the over polluted air. However, the air quality improved tremendously on Saturday because of the strong wind blowing the smog to the North side.

Indonesia should know by now how this culture of open burning affects its neighbours. The south-westerly blows the smog towards us in Peninsular Malaysia especially Klang Valley area. Now it’s heading towards the North part as far as Langkawi in Kedah and Penang as well.

Today in one of the newspapers it was reported a dispute and battle of words between Malaysian and Indonesian bloggers over the haze. Well, when I opened the blog, there’s nothing there to see. Probably they have taken out the posting to avoid unhealthy relationship between the two countries.

I have things to comment about the Indonesian government but considering what have been published in the newspaper today, I think I better not. Anyway, just to summarised the whole thing, the smog was from the open burning and forest fire in Indonesia. There were farmers and big plantation companies (Indonesia alleged that it was Malaysian companies) irresponsibly using the ancient methods of burning for land clearance (it is easy and cheap).

This is actually not a small issue. It involves our economy and people's healthcare. We are losing so much because of the haze. That is why many Malaysian are angry about it. The BBC and CNN reported the news (to show how obvious the situation is) but it's not our own making. I hope Indonesia will take it up seriously. Open burning will affect the global warming (clearance of forest unnecessarily and the air pollution) in the long run. I bet the Green Peace will agree with this. Sooner or later Indonesia will have to fight even bigger protesters.

Enough said about the haze. The rain today is the answered prayer to us. Now I think is the time to discuss on how to counter the problem from persisting in the future. Malaysian and Indonesia must not argue over the matter with no action. We need to sit together with an open mind for the betterment of both countries.

For the Merdeka Day that is approaching, I would say... INDEPENDENCE IS HAPPINESS!


  1. Alhamdulillah dapat menikmati kehangatan cahaya matahari..
    Kadang apabila berlaku sesuatu kejadian, barulah kita hargai akan apa yang pernah kita ada suatu masa dulu.. Inilah yang dikatakan, satu ingatan dari Tuhan.. kalau ditarik semua kenikmatan itu, apakah hidup akan sesempurna hari ini?

  2. Betul tu Sue. Kalau tidak kita tak perasan apa yang kita nikmati selama ni hanya untuk sementara sahaja.

  3. cik liza:

    Amat besar sebenarnya hikmah di sebalik kejadian jerebu. Seluruh manusia tanpa mengira kaum/agama kembali mengingati kebesaran Tuhan. Tangan manusia yg rakus dan tamaklah penyebab kepada kerosakan alam. Love Our Nature!

    U did start working already? Congratulations. I hope u will enjoy yr new job much better than the previous one.

    I do apologize if my previous comment abt AF do hurt yr feeling (make to feel 'kecik hati'). Tak pernah terlintas langsung dlm hati ni utk menyindir sesiapa apatah lagi utk berfikir seseorang itu 'simple minded'.



  4. Hi SK,

    Memang I kecil hati tapi sekejap je. Kalau Dr. evil yg menyebabkan I resign pun boleh I maafkan, inikan lagi hal kecil macam ni. I can never hold my anger or sadness for long.

    Don't worry, I was the one who's been silly. Sebenarnya bukan dengan you je, I dah battle with words dalam blog orang lain pasal our music industries, so bila you and Pak Idrus cakap sikit je, I dah jadi over reacting (tension pun sama). I tak suka orang ingat I suka tulis issue tak penting macam tak de benda lain nak tulis, sebab tu I mentioned pasal simple minded tu. But I am okay with you and everybody who commented. I realised that it is good to have a different perspectives from others. Next time belasah je kalau tak suka, ok :)

    p/s: I kerja freelance, sekarang parnership with someone doing event marketing and sponsorship. Best jugak, kerja ikut suka hati je.



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