Sunday, January 07, 2007

Pagasa receives Korean grant for rainfall monitoring

The Climatology and Agrometeorology branch of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) would receive a grant assistance from the Korean government to improve its rainfall monitoring and flood forecasting system.

Rosalina de Guzman, supervising weather specialist, said the Korea International Cooperation Agency would be providing early warning system devices such as rain gauges to Pagasa in the middle part of the year. A rain gauge costs $15,000.

De Guzman said the whole project costs millions of pesos, which would be piloted in the river basin in Iloilo City.

The project also includes the installation of rain gauges in Aurora and Mindanao river basins.

She said the equipment would enhance Pagasa’s monitoring of drought and flooding. It would also help the agency in assessing climate change and its impact on water resources and flood, including agriculture production.

De Guzman said they are currently conducting a study on climate change in the country and its effect to the agriculture sector.

Meanwhile, she said the peak of the El Niño phenomenon was experienced last December in Mindanao, specifically in Bukidnon, while below normal rainfall was experienced in the Visayas in November.

Luzon, however, experienced above normal rainfall in December, she said.

De Guzman said the weak El Niño will continue to prevail until the first half of the year.
By Helen Flores - The Philippine Star

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