Is it possible to predict massive storm surges during the North-East Monsoon? How much are sea levels expected to rise due to climate change?
Singapore's new Centre for Climate Research, which officially opened on Tuesday morning, will work on such questions, and use this work to advise agencies on developing and managing infrastructure.
The centre is part of the National Environment Agency's Meteorological Service and will be led by senior British researcher Chris Gordon, who previously headed the UK Met Office's Hadley Centre, Britain's climate research arm.
It was first mooted in 2011 as part of national plans to build climate science capabilities, and focuses on tropical climate and weather. Meteorological Service director-general Ms Wong Chin Ling said: "There is a common misconception that climate change and environmental issues are a problem for the distant future. The reality is that preparedness must begin in the present."