Written Reply to Parliamentary Question on Impact of El Nino on Local and Imported Food Supply by Ms Grace Fu, Minister for Sustainability and the Environment
Mr Edward Chia Bing Hui: To ask the Minister for Sustainability and the Environment how will the El Nino weather pattern, resulting in warmer sub-surface ocean temperatures, impact local farm yields and imported food supply of Singapore.
1 El Niño is a large-scale climate phenomenon over the tropical Pacific Ocean. It typically brings drier and warmer weather to much of Southeast Asia, but may also cause heavy rains or extreme weather events in other parts of the world. El Niño conditions are now here. While we are unable to ascertain the impact of El Niño specifically on food production, extreme weather events are known to cause crop loss and adversely affect food security.
2 Singapore imports more than 90% of our food, and we are not able to isolate ourselves from global food supply disruptions. Such disruptions could arise from a variety of causes, including extreme weather events, geopolitical tensions or decisions by foreign governments. Our multi-pronged approach to food security through diversifying our import sources, producing locally and stockpiling essential food items remains relevant and effective in mitigating the impact of a wide range of disruptions.