Storms in Mid-summer Wreaking Havoc in Bikol

Letter to the Editor

This is a reaction to the news article titled “Flash floods cause evacuation in Camarines Norte capital” last May 2. It is sad to say that this is just the tip of the iceberg because as of this writing, 19 have already died and 15 are still missing in the region. Barangays in Catanduanes have been cut off due to flooding, major thoroughfares in Sorsogon and Camarines Sur are no longer passable and Albay Governor Joey Sarte Salceda is about to declare the province under a state of calamity. Farmers and fisher folk have already been ordered to evacuate as a preventive measure against more flash floods and land slides.

All this can be blamed on the effects of climate change which apparently caused two storms in the middle of the summer season. We cannot afford to just talk about it because time is of the essence and lives are at stake. Aside from preemptive measures against natural calamities, what we need is a comprehensive and detailed climate map of the country and regions that are prone to be hit, particularly Bikol.

It is in light that we are initiating a project titled “Participatory Grassroots Research on Climate Change and Information and Education Campaign of its Impacts” from this we hope to make a climate map of the provinces which will participate and then an action plan to address the problem. We hope that more people not just Bikolanos will help us in this endeavor.

Prof. Joel Batanes
President, Board of Trustees
(Bicol Center for Environmental Protection)

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