Explore historical and projected climate data, climate data by sector, impacts, key vulnerabilities and what adaptation measures are being taken. Explore the overview for a general context of how climate change is affecting Malaysia.

Country Summary

This page presents high-level information for Malaysia's climate zones and its seasonal cycle for mean temperature and precipitation for the latest climatology, 1991-2020. Climate zone classifications are derived from the Köppen-Geiger climate classification system, which divides climates into five main climate groups divided based on seasonal precipitation and temperature patterns. The five main groups are A (tropical), B (dry), C (temperate), D (continental), and E (polar). All climates except for those in the E group are assigned a seasonal precipitation sub-group (second letter).  Climate classifications are identified by hovering your mouse over the legend. A narrative overview of Malaysia's country context and climate is provided following the visualizations.

Köppen-Geiger Climate Classification, 1991-2020
  • Af
  • Am
  • As/Aw
  • BWh
  • BWk
  • BSh
  • BSk
  • Csa
  • Csb
  • Csc
  • Cwa
  • Cwb
  • Cwc
  • Cfa
  • Cfb
  • Cfc
  • Dsa
  • Dsb
  • Dsc
  • Dsd
  • Dwa
  • Dwb
  • Dwc
  • Dwd
  • Dfa
  • Dfb
  • Dfc
  • Dfd
  • ET
  • EF

Malaysia is a tropical nation of the Southeast Asian region, comprised of the Malaysian Peninsula, and Malaysian Borneo. Malaysia features diverse land cover and topography, with an extensive coastline of over 4,800km, mountain ranges, and more than 50% forest cover. As of 2018 Malaysia had a population of around 32 million, and remains one of the most developed economies in Southeast Asia. Around 22% of the population live in the greater area of its capital city, Kuala Lumpur. While poverty levels are comparatively low for the region, Malaysia has historically been characterized by high levels of income inequality, particularly evident in urban areas (Achieving a System of Competitive Cities in Malaysia, 2015). The Malaysian government (2016) have measured falls in GINI since the World Bank made its 2009 estimate (46.30). As of 2018 Malaysia’s economy was service sector dominated (54.5% of national GDP), followed by manufacturing (23% of GDP). These sectors also dominate national employment, and in contrast to other Southeast Asian nations, agriculture employs only around 11% of the labor force.

While Malaysia remains one of the most biodiverse countries on earth, the country battles with degradation of ecosystems, both in its wetland and forest habitats. Concerns have been raised that increasing climate changes could accelerate these processes threatening Malaysia’s natural resources. Malaysia’s 10th (2011-2015) and 11th (2016-2020) national plans have targeted significant investment into climate resilience enhancements. In 2015 the Ministry of Natural Resources and the Environment submitted Malaysia’s Second National Communication to the UNFCCC. Malaysia ratified the Paris Climate Agreement and submitted its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) in November 2016.