Review of Regional Haze Situation for March 2022
1.1 In March 2022, Northeast Monsoon conditions prevailed over the ASEAN region. While the prevailing winds over the areas north of the Equator blew mostly from the northeast or east, the winds over the Mekong sub-region were light and variable in direction. The prevailing winds over the areas south of the Equator blew mostly from the west or northwest. As the Northeast Monsoon conditions gradually weakened in the second half of the month, the prevailing winds over most of the ASEAN region were light and variable in direction on several days during the review period (Figure 1).
1.2 The dry conditions over the Mekong sub-region continued in March 2022, even though isolated showers were observed over the sub-region on some days. In the rest of the ASEAN region, generally wet conditions were observed but brief periods of drier weather were experienced in Sumatra and West Kalimantan (Figure 1).
1.3 For March 2022, the total number of hotspots were lower or comparable compared to previous years for the same period (Figure 2 & 3).
1.4 Scattered to widespread hotspots were detected during the continued dry weather conditions over the Mekong sub-region. Clusters of hotspots were more intense and persistent in Myanmar, Lao PDR and northeastern Cambodia, with smoke haze observed to emanate from these hotspots on several days. In particular, smoke haze was observed to be denser over parts of Myanmar and northern Lao PDR.
1.5 Elsewhere in the ASEAN region, isolated to scattered hotspots were observed mostly in the Philippines, central Sumatra, West Kalimantan and Sulawesi. Localised smoke plumes were observed to emanate from the hotspots detected in West Kalimantan and the western coastal areas of central Sumatra on some days in the second half of the month.