P9.5B lost to El Niño, but floods here soon | Inquirer News

P9.5B lost to El Niño, but floods here soon

/ 05:48 AM June 08, 2024

P9.5B lost to El Niño, but floods here soon

WHERE’S THE FISH? This fishpond in the town of Carmen has been reduced to wasteland as the long dry spell and drought hit Bohol. The province has been placed under a state of calamity due to the impact of El Niño. —LEO UDTOHAN

With more typhoons expected during the rainy season, President Marcos on Friday ordered government agencies and local governments to review their disaster preparedness and response plans to ensure that no lives are lost when typhoons hit the country.

He gave the directive as the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) officially declared the end of the El Niño phenomenon, which caused P9.5 billion in agricultural damage due to drought and long dry spells in farmlands.


READ: Luzon drought seen after subnormal rain


“Since we are on the topic of our readiness to help you, I would like to inform you that the government is preparing for the rainy season. You, too, should be ready for strong typhoons and floods that might hit your area,” the President said in a speech in Legazpi City, Albay.

Mr. Marcos was in Pili, Camarines Sur, on Friday morning before proceeding to Legazpi City in the afternoon for the distribution of P162 million cash aid to El Niño-hit farmers and fisherfolk.

The Philippines is hit by an average of 20 typhoons each year. The more vulnerable provinces are in the Bicol region, Eastern Visayas, and Northern Luzon because they face the Pacific Ocean, where typhoons usually form.

Earlier, the President ordered the Department of Public Works and Highways to hasten the completion of its flood control projects and to combine it with other water-related issues through small water impounding projects.

In his turnover of cash aid to El Niño-hit farmers and fisherfolk in Tagum City, Davao del Sur, on Thursday, Mr. Marcos said no Filipino should have to suffer from floods.

“Flood control projects will no longer be for flood control alone, but we will use it to store water for irrigation and the fresh water supply of our households,” the President said.


He added they are thinking of tapping solar power to run the flood control projects.

The Chief Executive has previously backed the development of water-impounding facilities. In August last year, he ordered a study on a proposal to construct this kind of facility in the Candaba swamp in Pampanga to prevent floods. —With a report from Jacob Lazaro 

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TAGS: disaster, El Niño, Flooding, Typhoon

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