North Cotabato wants cloud seeding done ahead of El Nino

KIDAPAWAN CITY (MindaNews/02 September) – The North Cotabato provincial government has recommended the conduct of cloud seeding operations ahead of the El Nino phenomenon or dry spell which is expected to start this month.

The measure aims to cushion the impact of the dry spell and maintain agriculture productivity of local corn and palay farmers, Gov. Emmylou Mendoza said in her speech during Tuesday’s culminating program of the province’s 101st foundation anniversary highlighted by Kalivungan Festival.

Mendoza said she will meet with agriculture and disaster management officials of the province to tackle preparations for the coming drought which experts say could be worse than the 1997-1998 El Nino.

She said the water levels in creeks and rivers have decreased that’s why she wanted cloud seeding to start this month.

The provincial government has already started food security projects early this year in Makilala, Arakan and Aleosan towns.

The projects have a budget of P62 million and include the construction of farm-to-market roads, multi-purpose solar drying facilities and feed mills.

In 2014, North Cotabato was adjudged the top producer of rice in Region 12 with a production of 518,000 metric tons and second top corn producer with an output of 592,171 MT.

North Cotabato has been known as the fruit basket of the Philippines. It also produces high value crops like banana, rubber, oil palm in addition to corn and palay, its major crops. (Ferdinandh B. Cabrera/MindaNews)