Number of hotspots in Indonesia's Riau province increases: agency

Number of hotspots in Indonesia
# 25 July 2013 02:47 (UTC +04:00)

Baku-APA. The number of hotspots in Indonesia's Riau province has increased up to 185 as of Wednesday from 165 and 175 detected in the previous two days as Indonesian authority imposed haze emergency period, a senior official at Indonesia's National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) said, APA reports quoting Xinhua.

"The latest hotspot figure was detected by satellite controlled by U.S. agency of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) 18 in 12 regencies across Riau province," BNPB Spokesperson Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said in a statement.

Sutopo said that to extinguish the increasing hotspots, BNPB in coordination with the air forces and police have engaged Hercules cargo plane and helicopters to make artificial rains and water bombardments in the affected areas.

Sutopo added that a ministerial level coordination meeting held in Public Welfare ministry on Tuesday has imposed haze disaster emergency period until October this year as forest fire was estimated to reach its peak from August to October with areas identified to see the most forest fire in Sumatra and Kalimantan.

Sutopo added that forest fire in Indonesia was 99 percent man- made, caused by land opening conducted by set fire in the forest.

He added that a coordination meeting involving police, military, officials from environment, social, health and forestry ministries and institutions that make efforts to extinguish forest fire was scheduled in Palembang, South Sumatra on Thursday.

The meeting would discuss efforts to prevent and quell forest fire and application of legal enforcement against those involved in the forest fire, he said.

The forest fire in Riau province that ensued since early this month has caused haze problem that reduced air quality in the province and neighboring countries of Malaysia and Singapore.

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