Haze envelopes several parts of peninsula

The haze over Kuala Lumpur this afternoon.

PETALING JAYA: Thick haze continued to choke several parts of Malaysia this afternoon with more spots recording unhealthy Air Pollutant Index readings.

The Klang Valley was the worst hit, with Johan Setia in Klang, Selangor, reaching a “very unhealthy” API level of 222.

Visibility in Kuala Lumpur worsened with virtually all areas recording API readings of between 101 and 161.

An API reading of under 50 means the air quality is good, 51 to 100 moderate, 101 to 200 unhealthy, 201 to 300 very unhealthy, and above 300 hazardous.

The situation in Putrajaya also worsened from 121 at 7am to 140 at 2pm.

Elsewhere, Sungai Petani, Kedah recorded an API of 114, Tasek, Ipoh 128, Seri Manjung, Perak 133, Seremban, Negeri Sembilan 115, Melaka City 116 and Rompin, Pahang 176.

Most areas in Sarawak and Labuan recorded moderate air quality of 70 to 97. None showed good air quality.

As Malaysia and Indonesia continue to blame each other for the transboundary haze, Jakarta today rejected Malaysian complaints about smoke drifting from its forest fires across the border, saying blazes are also raging in parts of Malaysia and on Malaysian-owned plantations in Indonesia.

Indonesia’s Environment Minister Siti Nurbaya Bakar said she felt Malaysia had not painted an objective picture of the flames, which have ripped through parts of Indonesia’s Sumatra and Borneo islands for more than a month.

Siti Nurbaya said while smog from fires in Indonesia may have crossed over to Malaysia, fires detected last week in Sarawak and Peninsula Malaysia also contributed to worsening air quality there.