DA-Cordillera gears up for La Niña impact

Artemio Dumlao - Philstar.com
DA-Cordillera gears up for La Niña impact
This February 2023 photo shows the skyline of Baguio City overlooking Burnham Park.
LMP 2001 / Wikimedia

BAGUIO CITY, Philippines — The Department of Agriculture (DA) in the Cordillera region has started an information campaign to prepare for the potential impact of La Niña.

Danilo Daguio, DA-Cordillera Regional Technical Director for Operations, announced the reactivation of their disaster risk reduction and management (DRRM) operations center. 

The move follows a warning from the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) indicating a 69% likelihood of La Niña affecting the highland region from July to September this year.

Daguio explained that the center will  monitor the situation of standing crops in the region.  

“What we will be focusing on this La Niña are the areas are those in the low-lying production areas that are prone to flooding or those normally located in river dams and creeks, aside from those areas prone to landslides,” he said.

The DRRM Operations Center is currently overseeing production areas in Benguet, Mountain Province, and parts of Ifugao, aside from updating the standing crops every two weeks to determine the stage of plant growth in the different production areas in the region. 

The data gathered will help estimate potential damage values in case of a calamity.

According to Daguio, they are preparing the information and education campaign materials about La Niña, which will be disseminated through multimedia platforms.

Visits to vulnerable areas are being scheduled to meet with farmers and local government partners, providing guidance on necessary actions.

Daguio also said that coordinations are being conducted with the Philippine Crop Insurance Corp. for a possible insurance mechanism of affected crops during calamities to replace incurred expenses in farmers’ production activities.

As part of its yearly preparations for calamities and disasters, seed reserves are being prepared when there is an impending calamity.   

Rice, corn and vegetable seeds are readily available, particularly during times of calamities that will be distributed to affected farmers for them to replace their plants affected by a calamity.  

“Farm inputs like fertilizers, bio-fertilizers and post-harvest facilities wherein those established by DA in the past are being monitored to make sure that these facilities are operational such as green houses and dryers,” Daguio said.

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