Singapore, 19 June 2013 –
The 3-hour PSI reading as at 11pm is 282. The 24-hour Pollutant Standards Index (PSI) reading as at 11pm today is in the range of 130 to 150, which is in the Unhealthy range. The 24-hour PM2.5 concentration is 160 to 202µg/m3 as at 11pm today. We expect the 24-hour PSI to increase overnight and may reach Very Unhealthy levels.
2 Drier weather conditions in the region have led to an escalation in hotspot activities mainly over central Sumatra. 187 and 173 hotspots were detected over Sumatra on 18 and 19 June 2013 respectively. The smoke haze from the fires in Sumatra was brought over by prevailing winds blowing from the southwest or west, and has affected Singapore since 13 June 2013. We expect the wind and weather conditions to remain constant and therefore the haze will persist.
3 Based on the 24-hour PSI readings, the Ministry of Health (MOH) advises that Singaporeans limit prolonged or heavy outdoor activities. In particular, children, the elderly, and those with heart or lung diseases, should avoid outdoor activities and seek medical treatment early if they feel unwell. MOH has activated the hospitals to prepare for the anticipated increase in the number of cases of asthma, bronchitis and conjunctivitis.
Whole-of-Government Coordinated Approach
4 Given the current haze situation, all 23 Government agencies that form the Inter-Agency Haze Task Force (HTF) have been activated and are co-ordinating their respective action plans to mitigate the effects of haze on the public (see Annex A for list of HTF members).
5 The guidelines and advisories issued by the agencies to their respective sectors continue to be relevant. For example, the Ministry of Education (MOE) has disseminated guidelines on limiting outdoor physical activities in schools, and the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) requires childcare centres and kindergartens to cancel all outdoor activities for the children and for the operators to monitor the health situation of the children closely. In the case of a child falling sick, his parents should be informed and medical attention sought immediately. The Ministry of Defence has in place a set of guidelines to limit outdoor activities and training based on the PSI readings. This ensures that SAF troops can train safely by modifying the nature and intensity of outdoor activities. The Ministry of Home Affairs is also adopting appropriate precautionary measures for the well-being of our Home Team officers and National Servicemen deployed for active duties, while ensuring that overall safety and security functions are not compromised (see Annex B for respective advisories relevant to various stakeholder groups).
6 The HTF will continue to monitor the situation closely. HTF agencies will provide further advisories should the haze situation deteriorate.
7 The Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for the Environment and Water Resources had earlier conveyed the seriousness of the situation to their Indonesian counterparts and urged immediate action. CEO of NEA, Mr Andrew Tan, will be leading a delegation to Jakarta tomorrow, 20 June 2013, for an emergency haze meeting convened by the Indonesian Foreign Ministry.
Background Information: PSI and PM2.5 Readings
8 PSI is an index developed by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) to provide accurate, timely and easily understandable information about daily levels of air pollution. Air pollutants such as sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, ozone, carbon monoxide and particulate matter 10 (PM10) are used in the determination of the index. The figure is derived by averaging data collected for the past 24 hours. Computation of the PSI can be found here: http://app2.nea.gov.sg/docs/default-source/default-document-library/computation-of-psi.pdf?sfvrsn=0.
9 The figure for the 3-hour PSI is derived by averaging data collected for the past three hours. This index is unique to Singapore and was introduced in 1997 to provide additional air quality information which would better reflect a more current air quality situation.
10 The PSI readings and health advisories for the five regions in Singapore (North, South, East, West and Central), which are updated at 8am, 12 noon and 4pm are available at the PSI page. The public can also access PSI updates through the following channels:
- Weather@SG website
- NEA Twitter
- NEA Call Centre at 1800 CALL NEA (1800 2255 632)
- NEA myENV App on iPhone and Android
11 Health advisories are based on the USEPA’s guidelines. Only the 24-hour PSI value and not the 3-hour PSI value is correlated to the health effects outlined in NEA’s advisories. NEA’s health advisories are determined by the worse of the 24-hour PSI and 24-hour PM2.5 value.
For more information, please contact
Call Centre: 1800-CALL NEA (1800-2255 632)
Members Of The Haze Task Force
The Haze Task Force (HTF) was formed in September 1994 and is part of a co-ordinated effort across the whole of government. The HTF comprises representatives from 23 government agencies.
|1||Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources|
|2||Ministry of Transport|
|3||Ministry of Social and Family Development|
|4||Ministry of Defence|
|5||Ministry of Education|
|6||Ministry of Foreign Affairs|
|7||Ministry of Health|
|8||Ministry of Home Affairs|
|9||Ministry of Communications and Information|
|10||Ministry of Manpower|
|11||Ministry of National Development|
|12||Ministry of Trade and Industry|
|13||Building Control Authority|
|14||Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore|
|15||Economic Development Board|
|16||Energy Market Authority|
|17||Land Transport Authority|
|18||Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore|
|20||Singapore Civil Defence Force|
|21||Singapore Police Force|
|22||Singapore Sports Council|
|23||Singapore Tourism Board|
Haze Advisories For The Public
Listed are the general advisories for various stakeholder groups for the current PSI level.
|24-hour PSI Level 101-200||24-hour PSI Level 201-300|
(Primary, Secondary, Pre-University)
|Children in Child Care Centres and Kindergartens||