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City's Climate and Disaster Risk Analysis, Ongoing
18 February 2021 – The “nuts and bolts” of the Summer Capital’s Climate and Disaster Risk Assessment (CDRA) is steadily being put in place aimed at formulating a contingency plan that would guide the city’s programs, projects and activities (PPAs) towards climate adaptation and risk mitigation.
In Tuesday’s management committee meeting of local officials led by Mayor Benjamin Magalong, City Planning and Development Office (CPDO) coordinator Archt. Donna Tabangin said the assessment shall already be incorporated in the city’s land use, development plans, and zoning ordinance which are currently being updated.
Also included are the local disaster risk reduction management and climate change action plans, and the annual investment plan.
“The outcome of the CDRA informs us where development can and cannot be located and what priority PPAs are to be implemented in their proper location,” she said.
Also, a contingency plan must be formulated at the soonest possible time. This plan will ensure that the resources of the city are responsive to a given situation, proper policy interventions are taken when needed, and risk management options are in place.
It also identifies the five (5) areas where officials should base their decisions on when it comes to the city’s risk management and resiliency trajectory. These areas are: Population, urban use areas, natural resource-based production areas, lifeline utilities, and critical point facilities.
Tabangin pointed out that unlike in previous endeavors where disaster risk management and climate change adaptation were conducted separately, the current CDRA analysis fuses both which, she stressed, is as it should be since one triggers the other, or one exacerbates the other.
Recommendations put forth are information drive on identified risk areas; budget allotment increase for disaster prevention and mitigation; annual inspection of dilapidated buildings to determine structural integrity; and engineering intervention on areas classified under high risk.
Also urged is the implementation of a rapid earthquake damage assessment system; formulation of policies concerning disaster awareness and assessment; preservation of existing forests; relocation survey of forest reserves, watersheds, vacant forests, parks and tourism sites.
For his part, Magalong lauded the Technical Working Group (TWG) composed of city government personnel who undertook the CDRA analysis, for the “impressive” output and presentation.
He said that with the aid of technology, the city’s land use, zoning, climate and risk reduction plans should be integrated into one concept or system.
“This integrated system will teach us the right way or urbanization planning and avoid the pitfalls of the past,” the Mayor said.
The CDRA was made possible by the City DILG Office headed by City Director Evelyn Trinidad in partnership with DHSUD headed by Director Mary Amoroso. - Gaby B. Keith