President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. on Tuesday said his administration will address flooding by building multi-use infrastructures and improved weather forecasting to lessen its impact on communities and the agriculture sector.
“‘Yun lamang at talagang kailangan tingnan nang mabuti kung ano ‘yun magiging weather, kaya’t kasama rin diyan hindi lamang sa flood control… nagbago na hindi lang ‘yung paglagay ng dike, hindi lang ‘yung paglagay ng dam, kung hindi pati na ang pagbantay nang mabuti sa panahon,” President Marcos said in a media interview in Zamboanga City following an event there.
“Kaya’t kasama diyan ang DOST (Department of Science and Technology), nandiyan ang PAGASA (Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration), lahat-lahat sila nagtutulungan para itong mga bagong pag-ulan na ganito ay at least… kung alam natin may parating, eh makapaghanda man lang tayo.”
During the interview, the President said climate change is already taking its toll on communities as those who do not usually experience flooding in the past could now be easily inundated as a result of the changing weather patterns.
To address the issue, Marcos stressed the need for the government to build flood control infrastructures, saying however that such structures must have multiple functions.
“Ang flood control ngayon natin hindi na lang flood control. ‘Yung mga dam at saka ‘yung mga spillway para kunin ‘yung tubig. Ang bagong gawain natin ngayon ay number one, gagawa tayo… meron tayong ilalagay na dam, meron ding pagkukuhanan ng tubig para sa mga magsasaka, pang irrigation, meron… may ganoon,” Marcos told reporters.
“’Yung iba naman para mabawasan ang baha ay maglalagay tayo ng tinatawag na impounding pools. In other words, maghuhukay tayo, doon natin iiipon ‘yung tubig. Maganda ‘yan dahil unang-una hindi nasasayang ‘yung tubig, may iiwan doon sa atin. Tapos pagka medyo tuyo, pag hindi na umuulan, gamitin natin ‘yung tubig para pang-irrigation ulit, puwede pang lagyan ng isda.”
President Marcos earlier created the Water Resources Management Office (WRMO) tasked to create a comprehensive plan to prevent flooding in Metro Manila and coastal communities.
The WRMO under the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) will also address the country’s water and sanitation sector, climate change impact, lack of water infrastructure, increasing water demand due to population and economic growth, as well as regulation issues. | PND