storm Dante, which unleashed heavy rains triggering flash
floods and landslides, left at least 20 dead and displaced
thousands, emergency relief officials said on 4 May. The storm swirled over Mindoro Island south of Luzon
before blowing out into the South China Sea on 2 May. But as
it was leaving, a low pressure area gained strength and blew
in from the Philippine Sea, hitting the eastern-most island
storm, with winds of up to 95km per hour, was last detected
some 270km northeast of Virac in Catanduanes, the state
weather bureau said. The storm dumped rains across large
areas in the eastern Bicol region, causing floods and
landslides in the provinces of Catanduanes, Sorsogon,
Camarines Norte and Camarines Sur, the Office of Civil
Defence (OCD) said.
storm is only one case due to the fact that this
country has more than 20 typhoons per year.
the 48,465 people displaced from 17 towns, more than 3,000 are now
staying in evacuation centres, mostly schools, while the rest are
staying with relatives, the OCD reported.
Several bridges were also washed away or damaged by
the floods, cutting off many areas to traffic.
central government in Manila immediately ordered relief operations
for the affected areas, with the health department tasked to
"pre-position drugs and medicines" against common colds
and flu to prevent an outbreak in packed evacuation centres,
Defence Secretary Gilbert Teodoro said.
said police and military forces were also helping in the
evacuation and search operations, while an airforce aircraft was
conducting assessment flights over the affected areas. The Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical,
Astronomical Services Administration
said the back-to-back storms came in the middle of the summer
season and blamed the strange weather pattern on climate change.
It said it had not yet officially declared summer as over, but
warned of more unpredictable and extreme weather patterns.
Manila-based Asian Development Bank (ADB) in its report, The Economics of Climate Change in Southeast Asia, released on 27 April, stated that the region was
among the "most vulnerable" to climate change, because
of its long coastlines and heavy reliance on agriculture, natural
resources and forestry.
It noted that there had been an increasing frequency
and intensity of extreme weather events, including heat waves,
droughts, floods and tropical cyclones in recent decades. Climate
change, it said, was exacerbating water shortages, constraining
food production while also increasing health risks. It warned that
these four Southeast Asian countries could lose about 6.7 percent
of their combined gross domestic product each year by 2100 to
costs related to climate change if governments continued with
their "business as usual" approach.
a sad episode lived people from
Afghanistan, they cannot stop
earthquakes but they should develop
quick learning plans so citizens could
take necessary precautions.
islands are in a difficult region
which is constantly suffering storms
and catastrophes. I wish they could be
strong and get over this. They were
developing some strategic pans, hope
they can be helpful now.
we will start again the series of
disasters which occurred last year,
but I am afraid this time things will
get worst…Hope not.
By Sergio Daniel Paz;