El Niño losses in W. Visayas at P761M; still no calamity declaration

El Niño losses in W. Visayas at P761M; still no calamity declaration

/ 05:02 AM March 15, 2024

BACOLOD CITY — Crop losses due to the El Niño weather phenomenon in Western Visayas have reached P761,240,675, affecting more than 20,000 farmers, according to the Office of Civil Defense (OCD).

Still, the amount of damage, covering 15,417 hectares of agricultural land, was not enough to meet the criteria for the declaration of a state of calamity in local governments in the region, said Raul Fernandez, OCD Western Visayas director.

He said that for a local government to be placed under a state of calamity, at least 15 percent of its population must be in need of emergency assistance, based on a report of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).


At least 30 percent of the means of livelihood in the agricultural, business, and industrial sectors of the local government must also be affected, he said.


READ: El Niño impact: PH farmers lose over P109 million

The top three provinces with the highest amount of crop losses in the region are Iloilo at P519,198,659; Antique (P130,701,505); and Negros Occidental (P78,451,351).

Also damaged were crops in Aklan worth P30,187,159 and Capiz at P2,702,000.

Fernandez said an interagency meeting to assess the damage and plan responses was held on Tuesday.

READ: Gov’t readies measures to keep commodity prices stable

An agreement was reached for the Department of Agriculture and the DSWD to validate each agency’s data to determine the allocation of assistance. The DSWD, Fernandez said, will determine the number of affected population, a criteria for determining whether a state of calamity will be declared.


Himamaylan City in Negros Occidental earlier reported that eight of its 19 barangays were experiencing water shortages.

Aid to sugar planters

Fernandez said they had not received reports of water shortages in other provinces in Western Visayas, although water levels have dropped in some dams.

The Sugar Regulatory Administration (SRA) has allotted P66 million to mitigate the impact of El Niño on sugarcane farms which caused the drop in the country’s sugar production and an early end to the milling season.

SRA Administrator Pablo Luis Azcona said the current total sugar production was only 1.55 million metric tons, below the SRA’s target of 1.85 million MT for this crop year.

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

As a mitigating measure, SRA has released irrigation equipment in Negros Occidental, to cover almost 100 ha of sugarcane farms.

TAGS: El Niño, Visayas

© Copyright 1997-2024 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.