Philippines

MGB6 to assess towns most vulnerable to risks

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Elsa S. Subong

ILOILO CITY, 24 Feb (PIA)—Fourteen towns in the region are set to undergo vulnerability and risk assessment, according to the DENR-Mines and Geosciences Bureau-6.

These municipalities are Cabatuan, Guimbal, Tigbauan, Miagao, New Lucena and Mina in Iloilo; Banga, Batan and New Washington in Aklan; Belison in Antique; Panit-an, Dao and Roxas City in Capiz.

MGB Regional Director Engr. Leo Van Juguan, said that the VRA is a continuing program of the MGB in line with the geohazard assessment and mapping program of the government.

“The MGB has been in the forefront of conducting field surveys and assessments to generate information on geological hazards,” Juguan said.

“Added to this are the risks and vulnerabilities of localities and the recommendation on measures to mitigate the impacts of natural hazards,” Juguan further said.

Mae Magarzo, chief of the Geosciences Division said the VRA looks at the degree of vulnerability and potential risks of an area given the exposures of three elements: population, built-up areas and roads, to rain-induced landslides and floods.

She said that the 1:10,000 geohazard mapping of the MGB was completed and has given information on the extent of vulnerability of barangays and sitios to natural hazards.

“Taking this information further, the VRA will produce data on the number of population, the extent of built-up areas and the roads that will be affected given the extent of exposures to hazards,” Magarzo said.

The final output of the VRA are risk exposure maps, which serve as decision-making tool that the local governments can use before and after disaster planning.

Last year, the MGB has conducted VRA for Oton, Leganes, Zarraga, Pavia and Barotac Nuevo in Iloilo; Laua-an, Patnongon, San Jose and Barbaza in Antique; Numancia in Aklan; Sigma in Capiz. (JCM/ESS/PIA-Iloilo)