Plan now to ensure nation's food security

Though there are ongoing projects and plans to curb the eventual effects of climate change, a critical concern that needs to be addressed is Singapore's food security.

The consequences of a food supply disruption would be severe.

Hence, having a contingency plan is a must and we should explore sustainable farming innovatively. Some of the following could be considered:

•Acquiring the best knowledge in modern agriculture technologies in the areas of outdoor and high-rise green indoor farming.

•Ramping up support for both local and foreign farmers, as well as allocating land and sea space for both indoor and outdoor farming.

•Investing in large-scale automated storage facilities (both below and above ground) and other infrastructure to maintain reserves of food staples.

•Seeking out land leases to grow food in suitable countries.

Such partnerships would have the bonus of knowledge sharing, creating employment and adding to the local economy of these countries.

Producing food resources locally for our growing population may seem impossible.

However, by being innovative, we could turn some of our existing land, islands and sea spaces into productive resources that mitigate the risk of food supply disruptions caused by climate change.

We may not be able to produce everything, but if we succeed and achieve surplus quality products, they could serve as leverage for trade with other economies.

Ivan Ho Seng Cheng

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 22, 2015, with the headline 'Plan now to ensure nation's food security'. Print Edition | Subscribe