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Today’s post isn’t about photography…. But probably more on Ranting of the haze situation in Singapore…

For the past few days (It’s almost a week already), WHOLE of Singapore and some parts of Malaysia have been covered by the haze caused by the illegal burning of trees/forests in Sumatra (Indonesia).

PSI (Pollutant Standards Index) index this afternoon have shot 371. Which is considered hazardous under the National Environment Agency (NEA) guidelines. This is a record that far exceed the previous record high of 226 recorded in 1997 (16 years ago)…

Just a few articles if you are interested to read on…
Wiki: What’s the haze about?
Effects: Effects on health

 

Haze

The shot above is something I shot this morning at around 8am where the PSI is noted at a 3 hour average of 122. The location PSI of that hour is probably around 160. And this is the “clearest” part of the day today…

This isn’t a great shot in any way… In usually circumstances, to get this shot, you will be using blending techniques or GND filters etc… BUT, this shot is without any of those tricks…. It’s a straight out of camera JPEG resized and uploaded.. You can probably imagine how thick the haze is..

And you can also imagine how it was like in the more hazy zones like in the City where PSI of >200 is a norm there. Skyscrapers infront of your office building disappearing into the haze. “Famous” (or rather infamous) MBS disappearing from sight from somewhere it was prominently seen..

For those who live in Singapore and frequent Funan IT Mall, the below scene will be familiar to you… but with the exception that the “Ship” (MBS) is missing. It’s almost completely covered by the haze.. If you strain your eyes to the limit, you can probably make out the shape…
IMG_20130619_184847
This was taken yesterday evening about 7pm where the PSI reads apx 290. The air is very bad and I would say that if I have stayed any longer out there, I’m not sure what will happen to me *When I first exited the City Hall MRT station, I was already coughing badly*

But I was just out there for about 10mins? And I’m already felt my lungs burning. I really can’t imagine those people who are in the construction lines working in the fields or those who work in open areas.

And guess what? I quote from the article published in Channel News Asia about the reply from the Indonesian minister regarding this matter.

“Singapore should not be behaving like a child and making all this noise,”

“This is not what the Indonesian nation wants, it is because of nature.”

http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asiapacific/indonesia-chides/717798.html

My first thoughts: Only a child will talk like this. And also, only a child will call illegal burning of trees “Nature”.. The map below will show you the area in fire…

The above image is taken off an article shared from Facebook and I’m not able to get the origin of this image. As such, I’ll refer you to the place where the data can be extracted. Feel free to generate the fire hot spots data from: http://earthdata.nasa.gov/data/near-real-time-data/firms/active-fire-data#tab-content-7

Also, to show where the haze is floating to… Refer to the below image…
Source:http://app2.nea.gov.sg/weather-climate
Image Url: http://app2.nea.gov.sg/data/dt/xml/Warning_Advisory/Haze.gif

You will see that the haze is not affecting the main capital of Indonesia… Which is why the Minister is able to talk in such manner as if it doesn’t affect them at all… BECAUSE IT REALLY DID NOT AFFECT THEM!

*I swear that if the wind direction changes and blow TOWARDS their capital, I’m damn sure he will eat his words*

The sg government is probably not able to do much thing against the Indonesian government other than to send letters regarding our concerns. etc … ..

But I doubt this is going to help much. The burning have already started and it’s JUST GETTING STARTED and will continuing for the next couple of weeks..

Knowing that the Haze will not go away anytime soon, I really hope that the Singapore government over the next couple of days-weeks can put up some safety guidelines and policies and to enforce them. Constant breathing in the haze throughout the day is really hazardous to one’s health.

I guess I should end my ranting here… it can go on non-stop… And my eyes are quite irritated due to the haze that got into my house even when the windows are sealed off…

Will be getting a humidifier tomorrow and hope it helps to humidify the air abit… It’s getting really too dry… and warm too….

May have to postpone any of my shooting plans if the PSI is high…I don’t think it’s worth damaging one’s health for shots that you don’t make money (as in due to Job, you have to shoot) with.. If for passion, what’s passion when you don’t have the health to chase after it?

Regards,
YK

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