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Legarda Stresses Importance of Multi-Hazard Early Warning Systems on World Met Day

March 22, 2016

In observance of World Meteorological Day (March 23), Senator Loren Legarda today renewed her call for the strengthening of multi-hazard early warning systems (MHEWS).

Legarda, UNISDR Global Champion for Resilience, said that MHEWS, which inform the people of the potential impacts of impending natural hazards, the risks on their lives and livelihoods, and the action they should take, will make a difference in reducing disaster risks and building the resilience of nations and communities.

“We need to effectively reduce disaster risk as it becomes more complex given the increasing frequency, intensity and uncertainty of extreme hazard events. An integrated approach to early warning is needed. This approach entails the provision of impact-based forecasts and risk-informed warnings through multi-hazard early warning systems,” she said.

The Senator also said that the modernization of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) will strengthen community preparedness in dealing with natural hazards and climate change risks.

Legarda is the principal author of Republic Act No. 10692 or the PAGASA Modernization Act, which funds the enhancement of the state bureau’s capability in providing services to protect the people and the environment and to ensure economic security against natural hazards.

“PAGASA has done a lot for the country with limited funding and it could do much better as the government empowers it with better technology,” she stressed.

“There have been significant advances in the technologies used in monitoring meteorological and geological developments. They have great potential in providing vital information that can be useful in formulating development plans as well as in crafting mechanisms for disaster management as climate change and its detrimental effects continue to progress,” she said.

“On World Meteorological Day, I urge the government, private and civil society organizations to rise to these challenges through timely and reliable weather information in a form that is accessible to vulnerable communities and remote areas all over the Philippines,” Legarda concluded.