Monday, August 30, 2010

Philippines Geohazard Maps Soon to be Completed

The Philippine Information Agency announced that the Mines and Geosciences Bureau IX (MGB) is about to complete its geohazard mapping of the entire region that will identify places that pose threat to the safety of the people.

Emma Deverala, Information Officer of MGB IX, said the geohazard mapping in the region is now in its final year, which started in 2005.

"We are now in the final year of our geohazard mapping program. This is a 5-year national program that started in 2005", Ms. Deverala said.

A report given to PIA-Zamboanga shows that 87% of Zamboanga Peninsula was already assessed by the bureau.

"We have assessed almost the entire region, 87% to be exact. Our Geahazard Assessment Team, headed by Geosciences Chief Vheina Marie P. Quintana, is expected to fully accomplish the mapping of the remaining municipalities and cities in the region like the Triple S-B or the municipalities of Siocon, Sirawai, Sibuco, Baliguian in Zamboanga del Norte, Isabela City in Basilan, and their last stop, Zamboanga City, within the year. Hopefully by November", Deverala said.

The bureau has yet to release the report per province but Deverala hinted that the entire peninsula, just like the entire country, is prone to hazards like landslides and other land hazards.

She added that they have already talked to the different LGUs of the affected municipalities and gave them recommendations that will prevent or mitigate such threats.

MGB IX is also conducting information and education campaigns throughout the region arming people w/ adequate knowledge of the risk in their area and what to do to ensure their safety.

The geohazard mapping program was given more emphasis and support by the national government after Southern Leyte landslide in Feb. 17, 2006, killing thousands of people thru a Presidential Directive and resolutions from the National Disaster Coordinating Council. It involves the identification and characterization of the types of geohazards, particularly on mass movement and flooding present in the Philippines.

According to Deverala, upon completion of the program, the bureau will come up w/ geohazard maps identifying what type of geohazard a particular area is prone to. The map will also contain information on locations of Barangay centers and important landmarks among others. The maps can also be used by the government, urban and rural development planners, stakeholders and communities as a blue print on their disaster risk management plans or programs.


Post a Comment