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Japan gives RP P1.7B for new weather radar

By Kristine L. Alave
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 02:09:00 11/01/2009

Filed Under: Weather

MANILA, Philippines--The Japanese government has given P1.7-billion (3.350 billion yen) grant to the Philippines to improve its weather monitoring and information dissemination system in the aftermath of several deadly storms that killed hundreds in Metro Manila and northern Luzon and wrought billions of pesos in damage.

Foreign Secretary Alberto Romulo and Japanese Ambassador Makoto Katsura on Friday signed and exchanged notes on the Project for Improvement of the Meteorological Radar System, which provides for the grant.

Under the project, to be implemented by the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) and the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), the country?s three existing meteorological radar systems in Aparri, Cagayan; Virac, Catanduanes; and Guian, Samar, would be replaced with new Doppler (S-band) radar systems, the Department of Foreign Affairs said.

Doppler radar gives a more accurate reading of weather systems.

By upgrading the Philippines? weather monitoring system, the Japanese government said it hoped to mitigate the damage wrought by tropical cyclones on the lives and properties of Filipinos.

?We hope that these projects will assist the victims of these calamities, and support and strengthen the disaster mitigation efforts of the Philippine government. As a close friend and neighbor, Japan will continuously support typhoon victims to reconstruct and improve the living environment in the Philippines,? Katsura said.

Tropical Storms ?Ondoy? and ?Pepeng,? which struck in September and October, ravaged the island of Luzon. The rains brought by Ondoy led to the worst flooding in Metro Manila and surrounding provinces in recent memory.

Pepeng, on the other hand, dumped heavy rains on Central and northern Luzon, resulting in killer landslides and floods.



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