Drought impact on Pinoys varies
HHI’s study, conducted in 2017 with 4,368 adult respondents, is the first nationwide household survey on disaster preparedness in the Philippines. The report says at the national average, only 12 percent of Filipinos reported feeling extremely concerned, 24 percent were concerned while 21 percent were somewhat concerned, 16 percent were a little concerned and 26 percent were not at all concerned about being affected by drought. In the regions where the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration has identified provinces that are already experiencing less rainfall in the last five months associated with the weak El Niño in the Pacific Ocean, less than half of each region’s population expressed any concern about being affected by drought. In the Zamboanga Peninsula, where Zamboanga del Sur and Zamboanga Sibugay have been experiencing drought since February this year, only 25 percent were concerned about drought before the disaster. Zamboanga City, Zamboanga Sibugay and Pagadian City have already been placed under a state of calamity. READ: El Niño destroys P464-million rice, corn In Northern Mindanao, where the provinces of Bukidnon and Misamis Oriental have already lost at least P292 million in agriculture this year due to the effects of El Niño, as reported by the Department of Agriculture, 57 percent had been concerned about drought before the disaster hit. In the Ilocos Region, where drought has been present in Ilocos Norte since last month, and a dry spell is likely in Ilocos Sur and La Union, 41 percent were concerned. In the now-defunct Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, where Sulu and Maguindanao are threatened by drought, 39 percent thought they would likely be affected by drought.