After all I find myself justified by adopting as sub-title of this column
When I wrote that (S & T Enhanced Nations Have Edge). In fact, in a small scale Nations could simply be referred to a province, city, town or barangay having an edge if only it embraces and implements the tenets of S & T in its governance and cast away the bad-odor of politics or patronage politics.
IF ONLY WE EAST VISAYANS TOOK A SERIOUS ATTENTION to the stern WARNING from the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) aired TWO YEARS AGO, losses of human lives and limbs, personal, real agricultural and fisheries properties could been minimized!
According to PAGASA, “…local executives of Leyte were provided with inundation maps in 2011 under the READY project funded by the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID) through the United Nations Development Program.” In a capsule, the warning talked about “…severe flooding from storm surges reaching as high as 12 meters (39.37 feet).” As an advocate of Science and Technology and if only to educate our fellow East Visayans, I would like to reproduce by lifting the more salient portions of the PAGASA Warning, thus-
“The inundation map was designed in a worst-case scenario showing coastal barangays of Leyte vulnerable to a high level of storm surges ranging from three to six meters. . . . The storm surge hazard mappng of Leyte showed parts of Leyte, including Tacloban City, suffering inundation from four meters to 12 meters in a worst case scenario.
The study recommended the construction of rigid seawalls and breakers with piled foundation for protection against storm surges. . . . It is highly recommended to let the local government use this (storm surge hazard map) as reference for their disaster mitigation and preparedness plans and land use planning. . . . It also suggested the planting and preservation of mangroves along the shoreline as these help in dissipating big waves and storm surges.”
Typhoon Yolanda packing winds of at least 235 kph as it made landfall in Guiuan, Eastern Samar, generated storm surges as high as 7 meters, the average height of a 2-storey building, in Leyte (Tacloban, etc.)
The Inundation map was a product of a 3-year multi-agency study/research under the acronym READY, participated in by PAGASA, Phivolcs (Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology), NAMRIA (National Mapping and Resource Information Authority), and MGB (Mines and Geosciences Bureau).
Here’s my 4 cents advise to those aspiring for LGU elective positions – TO ASK YOURSELVES IF YOU ACCEPT SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY AS KEY TO GOOD/SOUND GOVERNANCE, otherwise you have no business being head of LGUs, TAP HUMAN RESOURCES TO HELP YOU UNDERSTAND S & T, otherwise YOU QUIT!
Indeed, winning in an election is not the end of being a government servant it is about asking “WHAT CAN I DO, ONCE I WIN IN AN ELECTION, TO ADDRESS THE BASIC NEEDS OF THE CONSTITUENTS, from food security, livelihood generation, health, and education needs! No wonder, there are municipalities considered as sleeping LGUs, miserably unable to introduce innovations, in terms of growth and development, to their towns and constituents lives. Indeed, there are such towns in Leyte administered by so-so managers, a poor cry to what the Mayor of the smaller town of Javier has been doing, whose constituents have been enticed to engage in the basic livelihood through farming of vegetables, fruits and simple processing of ginger, etc.
NEXT TOPIC : May have to continue to tackle the aftermath of the recent Typhoon – the Woman-power of Yolanda turned into Super-Killer calamity