|28 Mar 2016|
|Government boosting disaster risk reduction efforts, says Palace official|
|The government is boosting its risk reduction efforts to ensure the safety of the Filipino people during natural disasters, a Palace official said on Sunday.
“Matatag at lalo pang pinapalakas ng pamahalaan ang kahandaan ng ating mga siyudad at komunidad laban sa panganib na dulot ng bagyo at iba pang kalamidad. Sa bawat barangay, bayan, lungsod, lalawigan at rehiyon at maging sa pambansang larangan, mayroong Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council na patuloy na nagmomobolisa sa pamayanan upang makapagtatag ng disaster-resilient communities,” Communication Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr. said during an interview over dzRB Radyo ng Bayan. He was reacting to a recent Verisk Maplecroft report which mentioned the Philippines as among 10 countries with the most number of people exposed to natural hazards.
Verisk Maplecroft, a risk management firm based in the United Kingdom, said Asia has the largest number of people exposed to natural disasters, with India having a billion people at risk. Other Asian countries cited were China, Bangladesh, and Indonesia.
Secretary Coloma said that no less than President Benigno S. Aquino III heads the National Climate Change Commission, which is in charge of implementing strategies to deal with the challenges of climate change effectively.
“Mayroon din tayong National Climate Change Commission na kung saan mismong ang Pangulo ng Pilipinas ang taga-pangulo at ang komisyong ito ay nangunguna sa pagtutok sa pagpapatupad sa mga estratehiya para sa epektibong pagtugon sa hamon ng pagbabago ng panahon,” he said.
The Palace official said even other countries are using the best practices of the Philippines as examples to reduce risks.
“Ang mga best practices sa Pilipinas ay ginagamit pang huwaran ng ibang bansa at patunay dito ang pangunahing papel na ginagampanan ng Pilipinas bilang kasalukuyang pangulo ng Climate Vulnerable Forum na ngayo’y binubuo ng mahigit sa 100 bansa. Matatandaang sa nakaraang COP o COP21 (21st Conference of Parties) meeting sa Paris, nanguna ang Climate Vulnerable Forum sa pagbubuo ng consensus na humantong sa makasaysayang Paris Agreement on Climate Change,” explained Coloma.
The Paris Agreement is an agreement within the framework of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change governing greenhouse gases emissions mitigation, adaptation and finance from 2020 onward, he added.
According to Verisk Maplecroft researchers, 1.4 billion people in South Asia are exposed to at least one major natural hazard, from severe storms to flooding and earthquakes.
They said Manila is the most exposed city, with majority of its 23 million population in the path of typhoons. Other major cities like Tokyo (Japan), Jakarta (Indonesia), and Dongguan (China) were also found to be at risk. PND (jm)
|China trashing of bananas from Philippines will not affect trade relations, says Palace official|
|Malacañang has allayed fears over the reported thrashing of 35 tons of bananas from the Philippines by Chinese authorities, saying it will not affect the trade relations of the two countries.
Communication Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr. said during an interview over dzRB Radyo ng Bayan on Sunday that according to Trade and Industry Secretary Adrian Cristobal, Jr., the quantity of the destroyed bananas is too small to have an impact on the relations of the Philippines and China.
“The reported quantity, 35 metric tons, is too small as it is equivalent to only two containers or around 2,700 boxes with value estimated at FOB 1.4 million pesos only. This quantity is too small in terms of the overall Philippines-China trade relations. We surmised that the subject shipment did not meet the rigid sanitary and phytosanitary inspections of China and were rejected and destroyed routinely as part of SPS procedures to prevent contamination. The quantity is not unusual in as far as rejections are concerned in the normal course of business. It is also possible that the shipment was rejected due to levels of pesticides exceeding maximum residue limit or MRL,” Secretary Coloma said, quoting Secretary Cristobal.
“Mayroon po kasing pinaiiral ang World Trade Organization na patakaran hinggil sa SPS o ang Sanitary and Phytosanitary inspection at routinary lang po ito at ayon po sa unang pagturing sa impormasyon, routine matter lang po ang pagsasagawa ng ganyang pagsusuri na para bang quality control inspection,” he explained.
According to reports, customs officials at the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen destroyed 34.78 tons of substandard bananas imported from the Philippines.
The bananas worth US$33,000 were tested and were found to have an excessive amount of pesticide. PND (jm)
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