PSI to fluctuate between ‘moderate’ and ‘unhealthy’ range: NEA
SINGAPORE – The National Environment Agency (NEA) forecasts the island to experience slight haze as winds continue to blow from the southeast or south today (Sept 22), in their haze advisory released to members of the public.
SINGAPORE – The National Environment Agency (NEA) forecasts the island to experience slight haze as winds continue to blow from the southeast or south today (Sept 22), in their haze advisory released to members of the public yesterday.
“We may experience occasional hazy conditions during the day. The overall air quality tomorrow is expected to fluctuate between the high-end of the Moderate range and the low-end of the Unhealthy range.”
Singapore experienced a sudden deterioration in the surrounding air quality in the late afternoon yesterday, with reports coming in from certain parts of the island of a burning smell lingering in the air.
The National Environment Agency (NEA) said the swift increase in haze levels was due to a sizeable amount of smoke blowing in from Sumatra by prevailing winds.
“Singapore is experiencing deteriorating hazy conditions due to an incoming haze cloud we have detected southwest of Singapore,” said the agency in an advisory to members of the public released at 7pm yesterday.
“The total number of hotspots detected in Sumatra and Kalimantan today was 64 and 73 respectively, mostly in the southern parts of Sumatra and Kalimantan. Widespread smoke haze was visible in southern Kalimantan,” NEA added.
The three-hour Pollutant Standard Index (PSI) levels hovered around the “good” and “moderate” range for most of yesterday morning and afternoon but slowly crept up in the latter range from 1pm to 5pm. At 7pm, the reading inched closer towards the “unhealthy” range at 89 at the time when air quality can be clearly seen to be deteriorating. At 8pm, the PSI was well into the unhealthy range at 116. It registered a high of 129 before dipping slightly to 121 at 10pm. The 24-hour readings continued to hover in the “moderate” range, registering a low of 48-54 at 1pm and a high of 59-67 at 9pm.
Some members of the public complained on social media about a burning smell going around in the air, just as the island was gearing up for the Singapore Formula One race. NEA acknowledged “reports of burning smells in the central and eastern regions of Singapore” in their media advisory.
Last Thursday, Singapore also experienced PSI levels in the “unhealthy” range, registering the worst air quality readings this week when air quality hovered above 100 for most of the day.
Minister for Environment and Water Resources Dr Vivian Balakrishnan in his Facebook post assured members of the public that the environment agency will keep them informed.
“The forecast for the 24-hour PSI over the next six hours is in the high end of the moderate range or even low unhealthy level,” he added.
Earlier this week, the NEA said that Singapore is expected to experience haze for the next two weeks due to prevailing wind conditions from the south-southeast or the south-west where Sumatra lies, with periods of consecutive dry days that are typical during this South-west Monsoon season.