For farmer Achmad Rusli, it was a season of smoke: Ten weeks without sunlight for his oranges, guavas and durians, thanks to deliberately set forest fires that burned a chunk of Indonesia the size of New Jersey.
The fires have finally died down with the arrival of monsoon rains, but too late for his crops, which are far too measly to sell.
"We had not seen the sun in a two-and-a-half months," said Rusli, 34, from Riau province, in eastern Sumatra, among the six hardest-hit provinces. "How can we harvest the fruit?"
The ecological disaster has inflicted a staggering toll on the region's environment, economy and human health: 8,063 square miles of...