The strongest motivation to resolve this year’s transboundary haze crisis must be a moral one, said Defence Minister Dr Ng Eng Hen in a Facebook post yesterday (24 Oct), as he welcomed home the firefighting assistance team from the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) and Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) after a two-week mission in Indonesia.
Dr Ng noted that the haze has impacted the lives of millions in the region, affected businesses and forced schools to close. “But to me, the strongest motivation to deal with the haze for Indonesia must be a moral one – the health of hundreds of thousands of their own citizens are affected by this man-made disaster as they breathe in high levels of pollutants. These are strong reasons to act decisively,” he added.
Speaking to The Sunday Times yesterday (24 Oct), Indonesia’s Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Luhut Pandjaitan said that the government plans to claw back concessions in peatlands that have yet to be cultivated, to prevent companies from using the slash-and-burn method to clear land.
Dr Ng said that Indonesian leaders have realised that prevention and enforcement are key to preventing this environmental disaster from recurring, and lauded the leaders’ ideas and initiatives to mitigate the haze crisis.
Share your views on the efforts to resolve the current haze crisis, said to be the worst in a decade.
Source: "Moral need to act decisively on haze, says Ng Eng Hen" (The Straits Times, 25 Oct 2015)