Welcome to SEARCA Knowledge Center on Climate Change Adaptation in Agriculture and Natural Resource Management in Southeast Asia (KC3)

Severe storms, floods show impact of climate change

Published on 26 November 2014 Malaysia

In the long term, climate change is inevitable in Malaysia because of the anthropogenic (caused by humans) increase in greenhouse gases.

The Meteorological Department said globally, rainfall patterns would generally change, with highly variable trends occurring over the tropical region.

It said some areas would receive an excess of rainfall while others would see a deficit, thus, affecting the availability of water.

“Weather-related natural hazards, including severe thunderstorms, rough seas, severe haze, floods, the rise in sea-levels, landslides, droughts and forest fires, are anticipated to increase.

“In Malaysia, severe storms, haze and floods depict the impact of climate change.

“Extremely wet conditions can lead to severe floods, landslides, as well as loss of properties or even lives, while extremely dry conditions will result in droughts, forest fires and crop failures, which lead to socio-economic disorders,” the department said.

The department added that the accelerating pace of climate change, combined with global population and income growth, threatened food security everywhere.

“Agriculture is extremely vulnerable to climate change, as higher temperatures eventually reduce yields of desirable crops while encouraging weed and pest proliferation.

“Changes in precipitation patterns increase short-run crop failures and long-run decline in production.

“This can affect food production for the population in the developing world,” the department said.

Climate change also affected the quality of air, the safety of drinking water, the availibility of food and secure shelter, as well as health hazards like diarrhoea, malnutrition, malaria and dengue, the department said.

“However, no comprehensive study has been carried out to determine the severity of the effects of global warming and climate change in Malaysia,” it said.

Source: New Straits Times Online | 2 November 2014