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PIA Press Release
2010/03/04

DA-9 estimates P300M damage to crop Zamboanga region

Zamboanga City (4 March) -- The Department of Agriculture (DA) has estimated P300 million worth damages to crop in the agricultural sector of Zamboanga Peninsula that would be hardly hit by the El Niņo phenomenon, here.

This was informed by DA Regional Director Oscar Parawan during a meeting with the local government of Zamboanga and other government and non-government institutions at the Sangguniang Panglunsod conference hall.

According to Parawan the provinces of Zamboanga del Norte and Zamboanga del Sur which are the rice producing areas in the region are mainly affected by the climate change.

The affected areas cover more than 3,000 hectares of rice and corn producing farmlands irrigated through communal irrigation system coming from water reservoirs and approximately 60 percent of these agricultural lands are rain-fed, Parawan said.

However, he informed that assigned municipal agriculturists in the different local government units (LGUs) in the two provinces has already warned the farmers on the possible effects of El Niņo while giving them mitigating plans.

Vegetable seeds were already distributed to the farmers which they could plant after harvesting their farm produce in case El Niņo continue to be experienced in the area.

In Zamboanga City, agricultural lands in the East and West coast are the possible areas that would be affected by the phenomenon, Parawan added.

Meanwhile, DA in cooperation with the city local government unit and partner government and private companies have agreed to conduct initial cloud seeding operations within the locality as proposed by Mayor Celso Lobregat due to the sudden brown-outs and water supply rationing experienced in the city.

An amount of P2.7 million was already released by DA for the purpose that was earlier requested by Lobregat from DA Secretary Arthur Yap.

The funding would be utilized for one (1) month, that is divide into P33 thousand for each flight which is spent for the plane's fuel and to purchase table salt for the seeding. (fnm/PIA-Zamboanga) [top]

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