Press Releases

Salceda urges PBBM to issue official presidential directive for measures to mitigate El Nino effects

April 5th, 2023

House Ways and Means Chair Joey Sarte Salceda (Albay, 2nd district) has called on President Marcos to issue an executive order directing specific government agencies to initiate measures to mitigate the impacts of the ongoing El Nino weather phenomenon, which could stretch up to 2024 and cause a national water crisis.

“I commend PBBM for the EO creating the apex body on water security. The first step is to acknowledge the problem, which he has by being clear about the existence of a water crisis. Now it is time to issue a related directive to mitigate the impacts of El Nino,” Salceda said.

Salceda, who also chairs the House technical working group on measures creating a Department of Water Resources, recommended several measures for adaptation.

“One, develop small scale short gestation period irrigation system (NIA, Provincial engineering office, DA). Accelerate Shallow tube well irrigation development in selected areas. Participatory, accelerated and focused low-lift pump (LLP) irrigation development,”

“Fast track the construction of small water impounding projects. Remind barangays that they have an obligation to set up rainwater catchment facilities through the DILG,”

“Formulation and implementation of agricultural measures for mitigating the adverse effects of droughts, including measures designed to increase cropping intensity, to optimize unit area productivity, and aimed at decreasing water duty and diversifying cropping system. Home gardening using pots and recycled containers and plastics.”

Salceda also suggested mitigation activities in response to the weather.

“DTI, FDA, DA. Monitoring and control of prices of basic and prime commodities, agricultural products, foods and drugs.”
“DENR: Fuel and fodder tree plantation, protection of catchment, watershed management run-off storage and recycling, and rehabilitation of watershed areas.”

“For social services and Government Financial Institutions: Crop Insurance extension, especially for severe weather activities. Credit facilities especially for hard-hit areas. Provide relief goods and services (Economic dislocation compensation)

“For BFP, LGUs, AFP, PNP, PRC: Transport of drinking, domestic waters, transport of fodder, etc., better communication system especially in response to health and safety issues, and fire prevention education campaign and fire safety inspections.”

“For NIA: irrigation projects (repair and maintenance), inter-basin water transfer, and new water resource development, with greater geographical diversification.”

Salceda adds that the House will likely pass the Department of Water Resources bill right in time for Marcos’s State of the Nation Address.

“I am positive that we have time between May 8 and SONA. It will be another major legislative accomplishment for PBBM.”

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