El Niño threatens food security, senator warns

Expressing alarm over the threat of  El Niño,” Senator  Nancy Binay said government agencies should start informing the public about their plans and programs to mitigate the possible impact of El Niño on crops,  poultry and livestock or overall food security.

“Are we prepared for the worse impact of the condition?” the re-electionist senator asked. 

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration said Wednesday that the weather condition is now affecting the country. El Niño is characterized by reduced amounts of rainfall and prolonged dry spell,  turning farms into arid lands. 

The state weather agency added that dry spell and drought had been observed in several provinces in Luzon and Mindanao from September 2018 to January 2019. These conditions were said to usher in El Niño.

Normally, Binay said the rice farmers have just started planting this February but if there will be no source of water for irrigation, this will cause a big problem to them.

“We know that  El Niño will affect not only our farmers, but also those raising food animals such as chicken and pig,  thus threatening food security.

The legislator said that some pests could also happen with the weather condition, aside from occurrence of different diseases.

“There are also several illnesses coming out during hot weather, and the public should know how it can be minimized or countered,” said Binay.

She added that special attention should be also given to the most vulnerable sectors such as the young, the old, and those with chronic conditions such as hypertension.  

“They are the most vulnerable so they need most medical assistance from our government,” she said..

Mahalagang malaman ng taong bayan ang mga posibleng epekto ng El Niño sa kanilang kabuhayan at kalusugan upang makapaghanda at mabilis na makatugon,”  Binay said. (The public should be fully informed of the  adverse effects of El Niño so they could prepare and  think up of feasible countermeasures.)

Topics: Nancy Binay , Philippine Atmospheric , Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration , El Niño , Luzon , Mindanao
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