Air pollution in Malaysia
When you've been living in Malaysia long enough, air pollution isn't a stranger to you anymore. Haze is an ongoing problem, sometimes to an extent where schools have to be closed so that children do not get exposed to it and are not allowed to play outdoors. This, combined with the blazing temperatures, causes many people to often develop very bad coughs.
The main cause of this haze is due to the slash-and-burn practice still being used by farmers as well as occasional peat fires in Indonesia. Slash-and-burn is an agricultural technique which involves cutting and burning of forests or woodlands to create fields. This large burning deteriorates our atmosphere, as well as leaving land which once bore many trees bare.
Most people defend the ecologically destructive method of the slash-and-burn by saying that it is only used by poor farmers who grow enough food to feed themselves and their families, and therefore have no alternative. There is much being done in Malaysia to save the environment, but we are only just starting. Hopefully in the future there will be more acts against deforestation, while at the same time providing the farmers some form of compensation in return for not deforesting their land.