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"Moderate" air quality expected in Singapore despite Indonesia's haze warning

Indonesia's disaster agency warns that chances of the haze returning to Singapore are getting higher, but the National Environment Agency says the air quality in the next 24 hours is likely to remain in the "moderate" range.

SINGAPORE: Despite a warning from Indonesia's disaster agency that haze could return to neighbouring Singapore and Malaysia, the National Environment Agency (NEA) says the air quality in the next 24 hours is likely to be in the "moderate" range.

Indonesia's disaster agency on Wednesday (June 25) reported a total of 366 hotspots in Riau province, up from 97 the day before, and 386 hotspots in Sumatra.

Disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho was quoted in media reports as saying: "We must be on alert as the wind is travelling east-northeast. The likelihood of the smog reaching Singapore and Malaysia is getting higher."

However, Singapore's NEA says there were 86 hotspots detected in Sumatra on Wednesday, down from 143 yesterday. Meanwhile, 58 hotspots were picked up in Riau, a drop from 98 on Tuesday.

The agency says showers over central Sumatra last night have also helped to improve the haze situation, and air quality in Selangor and Nilai, Negri Sembilan improved slightly.

The 24-hour PSI was listed as "moderate" at 48-57 as of 6pm on Wednesday. NEA says prevailing winds and thundery showers in the morning are expected to keep the air quality in the same range tomorrow.

"Given the air quality forecast for the next 24 hours, everyone can continue with normal activities," said the NEA.

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