Singapore / Indonesia — Singapore continues to monitor smoke from forest fires that often blankets Jambi and its surrounding areas and sometimes reaches neighboring countries, Singapore Ambassador to Indonesia Ashok Kumar Mirpuri said.
He said Singapore was seriously cooperating with the Jambi provincial administration in the environmental field, something that had been going on since 2007.
“We have been working with Jambi since four years ago through the minister of environment. We are seriously maintaining this cooperation,” Ashok said.
He said, the cooperation was reaping the results. For instance, about the monitoring of smoke in Jambi, the government had been working to monitor forest fires in Jambi for a long time. However, the cooperation was not in the form of funds but programs.
“One of the cooperation programs is monitoring the smoke,” Ashok noted.
Although the cooperation so far had been successful, forest fires continued to happen, he said, noting the cooperation was limited to monitoring only. The most important factor in this program was the Jambi people`s understanding of how to cope with forest fires that do not result in air pollution.
The Singapore government was only cooperating in the handling of fires. The goal was that the people understand the impact of forest fires.
Ashok promised that the cooperation would continue to be improved.
The government was even serious about the cooperation. In the future, the cooperation will continue to be improved in the new programs in the environmental field.
Besides, this cooperation could serve as an example for other provinces as it is very good for the application in society.
“As awareness of environmental damage, the cooperation with Jambi province was already very good and can be emulated by other provinces,” Ashok said.
The Singapore government in 2009 also had donated equipments to help extinguish forest fires and land in Muaro Jambi district, Jambi province. The equipment is in the form of early warning fire and air quality monitor.
At that time, all the equipment was delivered directly by the Singapore minister of environment and water resources at the Murao Jambi district head`s office.
The grants are intended for handling the land and forest fires effectively, so that the smoke will not spread to Singapore.