SINGAPORE: El Nino will likely increase the risk of transboundary haze in Singapore, according to the national weather office, saying the public should ensure they have sufficient face masks and air purifiers.
The meteorological service sees an El Nino climate pattern occurring in the second half of the year.
Coupled with a positive Indian Ocean Dipole that’s also likely to develop, this will bring warmer and drier conditions to the city state and surrounding regions through October, increasing the chance of haze.
Haze is a recurring problem in Southeast Asia, disrupting tourism and costing local economies billions of dollars.
It originates from natural or man-made fires in Indonesia and Malaysia, such as when conditions are dry and lands are cleared for growing oil palm, pulpwood and rubber trees.
Haze has sparked diplomatic rows between Singapore and its neighbours in the past.
Members of the public have been advised to make preparations like ensuring they have sufficient N95 face masks and air purifiers in working condition, according to the meteorological service statement.