Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The air quality around Riau Province reached a "very unhealthy" level on Sunday as haze from forest fires covered its surrounding.

Head of Data and Information Center of the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said the Provinces Air Pollution Standard Index (ISPU) reached 240 at 7 am local time indicating a very unhealthy level.

The poor air quality was detected in some region of Riau Province such as Rumbai (251), Minas (176), Duri Camp. (136), Duri field (114), Dumai (148), Bangko (127), Libo (399) and Petapahan (136).

The higher the ISPU reading, the higher he level of air pollution and the bigger the health concern is.

An ISPU reading between 0-50 represents a good air quality, while the index between 51-100 shows a medium quality.

When the ISPU reading is above 100, air quality is considered to be unhealthy, between 200-299 very unhealthy and more than 300 is hazardous.

"The hotspots in Sumatra and Kalimantan are endless despite continuous effort of forest fire fighting from land, air and the law enforcement," Sutopo said.

According to the Meteorology Climatology and Geophysics Agency, based on The Terra and Aqua satellite observation on Sunday at 05.00 am local time, there were 153 hotspots detected in the Sumatran region, most of them in South Sumatra with 144 hotspots and the rest were in Riau (3), Jambi (3), Riau Islands (2) and Aceh (1).

However, the number of hotspots may still rise as the Modis satellite will be passing over Sumatra Island at 04.00 pm, Nugroho said.

"The wind direction generally flows from Southeast and West to Northwest with the speed of 05-50 knot meaning it (haze) will not spread to Singapore," Nugroho said.

The Modis Satellite on Saturday at 04.00 pm still also detected significant number of hotspots in Kalimantan, Nugroho said, most of them were in Central Kalimantan (220); West Kalimantan (26), South Kalimantan (61) and East Kalimantan (50).

(Reporting by A.E.S.Wicaksono/T.A059/H-YH)

Editor: Priyambodo RH
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