betty July 12, 2022

SINGAPORE – Singapore’s third national climate change study, which will provide localised and high-resolution climate projections till 2100, will be completed in September next year.

The study will provide South-east Asia’s most advanced climate projections, zeroing in on every square of land or sea spanning 8km.

It will help countries plan ways to guard against the dangerous effects of climate change in the most accurate way possible.

The model will divide Singapore and the rest of the region’s land and sea into grid cells of 8km by 8km , and each cell’s changes in temperature, humidity, wind speed, rainfall amount and sea level rise will be projected till 2100.

This is finer than usual global models, where the side of each grid cell spans between 70km and 250km, which means Singapore appears as just one grid point, or not at all, because the island city-state is only about 45km across at its widest.

The Centre for Climate Research Singapore (CCRS) has been working with the National Supercomputing Centre to scale down global climate models to produce the 8km resolution forecasts.

Localised projections are important as different regions experience climate change differently.

To date, about 60 per cent to 70 per cent of data has been produced for the study, and researchers will start to analyse the data next year, said Dr Dale Barker, director of CCRS, at the third Sea Level Conference of the World Climate Research Programme on Tuesday (July 12).

Minister for Sustainability and the Environment Grace Fu, who gave the opening address at the conference at Sands Expo and Convention Centre, noted that climate scientists have found this region’s climate, especially rainfall patterns, particularly challenging to model.

Rainfall in South-east Asia is affected by many factors.

But many climate scientists call this region the engine room of the global climate system, said Ms Fu.

“The atmosphere, water bodies and land masses here are in constant conversation with each other, exchanging huge quantities of heat and moisture, and fuelling global atmospheric and ocean circulation,” she added.

Localised and high-resolution models of temperature, rainfall and wind changes here will allow scientists to better assess the impacts of climate change on local crop and aquaculture yields, for example.

This will help the country choose sea spaces that are more suitable for aquaculture, said Ms Fu.