Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Rain forest peat lands burn on the Indonesian island of Sumatra

Kuala Lumpur's Petronas Twin Towers this week Photo: Chatime

The annual illegal burning of the rain forest peat lands on the Indonesian island of Sumatra to make way for the planting oil palm trees, has long been an irritant for neighbouring countries, Malaysia and Singapore.

In recent days, in particular Sunday and Monday, Kuala Lumpur, the Malaysian capital where Finfacts is based, was blanketed in a smoky haze and the air smelt of soot.     

Angry reactions from Singapore and Malaysia have elicited an apology from Indonesia's president, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, but the FT's Ben Bland says that corruption and poor data make it very difficult to find the culprits. Meanwhile the real victims are Indonesians who have to live with this kind of haze every year.