"What this Country needs is not a change OF men but a change IN men" March 1980

Monday, March 10, 2008

Modernizing Weather Forecasting

SENATOR Richard Gordon has sought the modernization of the country's weather forecasting system to minimize damages by natural disasters.

In filling Senate Bill (SB) 2080, Gordon proposed the acquisition by the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) of the state-of-the-art-of-war weather and geophysical equipment and facilities within the next six years.

It is imperative, he said, for the Philippines to have a modern weather forecasting and warning system because of the numerous disasters that hit the country every year.

"These natural disasters such as floods, typhoons, and landslides, and earthquakes place in great danger the safety and lives of our citizens and cause considerable damage to property," Gordon said.

Under the bill, Pagasa shall adopt a four-pronged modernization program such as establishment of regional weather service centers in strategic areas across the country to broaden Pagasa's bases for delivery of services to each region; modernization of physical resources and operational techniques through the acquisition of state-of-the-art equipment and facilities, with emphasis on weather and flood monitoring and warning system and agro-meteorological observation system to strengthen services for agriculture; intensification of human resources development to keep pace with rapid international scientific and technological advances; and upgrade of research and development capability through amore rationalized and integrated approach, with focus on improvement of operations, and specialized services development for cost recovery.

Gordon said funding for the project will come from the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor). The bill also grants Pagasa the authority to enter into loan agreements with, or accept grants and donations, from foreign and local financial institutions.

The proposed measure also gives Pagasa elbowroom to adopt a sustainable cost recovery program like getting subscriptions for its specialized weather information and other scientific data.

The bill also proposes the creation of a modernization oversight committee to monitor implementation of the project. The secretary of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) will chair the committee, with members coming from the Senate and the House of Representatives. (CPB/Sunnex)

Monday, March 10, 2008
Sun Star Manila


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