UP Diliman, Quezon City — Officers, members and representatives of the Overseas Security Advisory Council, Manila Country Council (OSAC), and the American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) of the Philippines, Security and Disaster Resources Group Committee (SDRG) visited the National Institute of Geological Sciences yesterday, January 18, to know more about the UP NOAH Center’s efforts to enhance the preparedness and resilience of the Philippines relative to disasters and climate change impacts.
In his presentation, Dr. Mahar Lagmay, Director of the UP NOAH Center, stressed the importance of probabilistic hazard maps for long-term development initiatives. “We must capture the hazards of the future,” he emphasized.
State weather bureau Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) held their soft launch and press conference for their new website last Wednesday, 10 January 2018. One of the website’s proposed developments is the integration of the UP NOAH Center’s flood, landslide, and storm surge hazard maps on their new website (see: http://bagong.pagasa.dost.gov.ph/).
The new website aims to provide impact-based forecasting and warnings that can estimate number of houses to be affected, number of people to be affected by incoming Tropical Cyclones by using data from the Nationwide Operational Assessment of Hazards program.
One of the first projects of the RI and the NOAH Center aims to make all UP campuses and communities around the country resilient to climate change and geared for long-term development.
Lagmay explains that UP “must first do it in our own backyard, if we are to get all municipalities to prepare and plan ahead. We can’t preach what we don’t practice. The first step is to do the resilient campuses project so that it can be a model for campuses in the Philippines.” He says that the project uses climate change projections prescribed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a scientific and intergovernmental body under the United Nations.
The General Appropriations Act of 2018 was signed into law last December 19, 2017 and detailed the P3.767 trillion national budget for the year 2018.
The UP Resilience Institute is included in the budget appropriations for the State Universities and Colleges (SUCs).
The statement echoed Senator Loren Legarda’s statement during the Senate Finance Committee hearing on the proposed 2018 budgets of State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) and Commission on Higher Education (CHED) on September 21, 2017.