Legarda Supports Creation of Farmers and Fisherfolk Climate Change Vulnerability DatabaseDecember 9, 2011
SENATOR LOREN LEGARDA TODAY EXPRESSED SUPPORT TO THE GOVERNMENT’S PLAN TO CREATE A DATABASE OF ALL FARMERS AND FISHERFOLK IN THE COUNTRY THAT WILL FACILITATE EFFICIENT AND TARGETED DELIVERY OF ASSISTANCE TO THE AGRICULTURE AND FISHERIES SECTOR.
Legarda is referring to the national registry for farmers and fisherfolk which the departments of Budget, Agriculture, Agrarian Reform, and Local Government, and the National Statistics Office are planning to setup. The database will contain information such as names, addresses, farm locations, poverty level, calamity incidence, and vulnerability to climate change.
“We are a country highly reliant on agriculture for livelihood and sustenance, and every time a natural hazard such as typhoon occurs, the agriculture and fisheries sector has always been greatly affected. While the government has rehabilitation programs and other assistance for farmers and fisherfolk, we cannot be merely reactive,” she explained.
“This national registry of farmers and fisherfolk will aid the bureaucracy in carrying out specific proactive programs to increase the protection of the agriculture and fisheries sector and to elevate their level of preparedness against various hazards,” she added.
The Senator noted that the information on vulnerability to climate change is crucial since the extreme changes in temperature, rainfall and sea level greatly affect the agriculture sector.
Legarda pointed out that from 1970 to 1990, typhoons, floods and droughts resulted in an 82.4% loss to total Philippine rice production; from 1990 to 2003, the damage to agriculture due to El Nino-related drought was estimated to be more than US$ 370 million. Meanwhile, warm temperatures also cause the decrease in fisheries yield.
“Climate change enhances more extreme weather events such as drought spells, more frequent typhoons, and flooding. We need to know which part of the country is vulnerable to certain hazards to match our climate adaptation program. This would cushion the effects of climate change on our agriculture and fisheries sector,” she stressed.
“Our food self-sufficiency is highly dependent on this sector and it remains to be the backbone of our economy. Thus, this government initiative to create a national registry of farmers and fisherfolk is a welcome development in our effort to uplift our agriculture and fisheries sector,” Legarda concluded.