P10B set aside for communities vulnerable to climate change – Cimatu

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 17 July) – The government will set aside a budget worth P10 billion as investments to increase the capabilities of the vulnerable provinces on climate change adaptation and mitigation and disaster risk reduction as “readiness and preparedness is key to resiliency,” Environment Secretary Roy A. Cimatu said.

Speaking during the “Tatak ng Pagbabago 2019: The Pre-SONA Forum” at the SMX Convention Center Davao on Wednesday, Cimatu said the investments will include cover programs in agriculture and fisheries development, environmental protection and management, social welfare and livelihood development, water resources management, and infrastructure development.

President Rodrigo R. Duterte will deliver his fourth State of the Nation Address on July 22.

“The government will provide the ability to generate, synthesize, and disseminate knowledge, methodologies, and decision-making tools to ensure climate resilience,” Cimatu said.

To reduce agriculture’s vulnerability to climate change, he said it is important to equip the farmers with the right knowledge to make them understand its ill-effects, highlighting the plan of the government to scale up assistance to improve the resiliency of the agrarian reform beneficiaries

The retired general said that the Department of Agriculture is undertaking a nationwide training on climate-smart farm.

Cimatu said Filipinos should also prepare for the impact of strong earthquakes, adding that comprehensive trainings for Rapid Earthquake Damage Assessment System (REDAS) are being conducted in several provinces to provide local government units with “quick and near real-time simulated earthquake hazard map information.”

The system could aid the LGUs in the decision-making and mainstreaming disaster risk reduction into the local development planning process, he said.

Aside from this, Cimatu said the Department of Science and Technology is set to undertake several projects to enhance resiliency of communities in the countryside, including the installation of doppler weather radars, high frequency doppler radar networks in various parts of the country, flood forecasting and warning systems in major river basins, borehole seismic station in Kanlaon Volcano in Negros Island, and probabilistic seismic hazard analysis in Davao City.

He said these projects will be complemented with programs by the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) to prepare “the communities and LGUs in case of disasters.” (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)