Most provinces in the country will soon to experience drought, felt between September and October this year.
El Niño is considered as one major problem by Filipinos. It can create food-price and generalised inflation, reduce agricultural output and trigger social unrest in commodity-dependent poor countries that primarily rely on imported food. Epidemic diseases may also came up, increased risks of some of the diseases transmitted by mosquitoes, such as malaria and dengue.
El Niño is associated with a band of warm ocean water, develops in the central and east-central equatorial Pacific accompanied by high air pressure in the western Pacific and low air pressure in the eastern Pacific. With average period length of five years, happens at irregular intervals of two to seven years and lasts nine months to two years.
Science and Technology Secretary Mario Montejo stated, “The El Niño phenomenon will be at its worst this year, at least 79 provinces would be affected by the El Niño this year,the dry spell and drought conditions will affect 29 provinces in October and 50 more provinces by the end of the year. Food security and health are priority concerns in the government’s preparation for the 2015 El Niño.
Department of Science and Technology or DOST is preparing for the upcoming drought in the country. They will use a map produced by a Lidar system to come up with clear mapping of areas, a highly vulnerable to dry spell as El Niño phenomenon found to last until next year. El Niño this year predicted as among the strongest in the historical record.
Chairperson of Senate committee on climate change, Loren Legarda said, “During El Niño, a leading concern is food security because prolonged drought would drastically cut down the production of local crops like rice, corn, sugar cane, vegetables and other agricultural products. It can also cause a decrease in fisheries yield.”
Government been also preparing for the said phenomenon and crisis. It will be felt between September and October. In statement of Assistant Agriculture Secretary Edilberto de Luna saying, the government has been addressing the effects of the El Niño phenomenon, beginning with cloud seeding early this year. IMAGE/AP