The IFRC’s Programme and Operations Division has revised and approved the EAP for the Philippines Red Cross (PRC) / Typhoon with a timeframe of five years and a budget of CHF 249,540; consisting of CHF 131,985 for readiness and pre-positioning and CHF 117.555 for early action. The EAP shall be funded from the IFRC’s Forecast based Action Fund (by the DREF) where allocations shall be drawn on annual basis to cover readiness and pre-positioning cost and as a one off upon trigger to implement early actions.
SUMMARY OF THE EARLY ACTION PROTOCOL
This Typhoon Early Action Protocol (EAP) has been designed and can be implemented by the PRC chapters in 19 targeted provinces, in four different parts of the country (see Figure 1) and is meant to facilitate anticipatory actions of the PRC when certain tropical cyclone forecasts show a high likelihood of a severe impact in the country.
This EAP provides step-by-step instructions for the selected actions to be implemented in a three-day lead time. The typhoon Early Actions are to be triggered if the forecasted impact of the winds on housing, 72 hours before landfall, is more than 10 per cent of houses to be totally damaged in more than three municipalities. The impact forecasts are prepared with a statistical model developed by the 510 initiative of the Netherlands Red Cross (see sample provided for typhoon Ompong in September 2018), which allows the PRC to validate (or not) the trigger. Once the trigger is confirmed, any further change of track / magnitude of the tropical cyclone will not lead to the cancellation of activities, and only livestock evacuation can still be adjusted.
Three Early Actions are considered for minimizing the impact of typhoons on livelihoods and housing: (i) early harvesting of matured crops, (ii) livestock and assets evacuation and (iii) installation of shelter strengthening kits (SSK). In addition, cash for work is considered systematically for mobilising work force to implement these three early actions before the typhoon landfall, and will specifically benefit to vulnerable farmers, or fisherfolk (see section 5.6), by providing them with temporary employment. It is estimated that at least 50 per cent of these workers will be able to use the cash ahead of the typhoon.
In order to facilitate the implementation of the Early Actions in a lead-time of three days, the possible areas of intervention can be for example, the most at-risk barangays (communities) – are shortlisted with the support of provincial and municipal DRRM partners at an early stage. Barangay committees (BARCOM) are set up in those most at-risk communities, to help pre-identifying the farms and the houses that would benefit from the agreed Early Actions.
The EAP does not work in isolation. It is connected to existing Disaster Risk Reduction and Management mechanisms – such as the Pre-Disaster Risk Assessment (PDRA) meeting organized by the Provincial DRRM office prior to a typhoon landfall, which will feed the decision on which Early Actions the Chapter will choose, and in which barangays it must be implemented. It ensures that the planned early actions are carried out in a timely manner and successfully in coordination with the concerned local authorities (at provincial, municipal, and barangay levels).