Disaster preparedness is key to competitiveness (PIA)

An official of the National Competitiveness Council (NCC), an attached agency of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), has emphasized on the relevance of disaster preparedness for competitiveness.

In an interview during the NCC Roadshow here on November 27, Guillermo M. Luz, NCC Private Sector Co-Chair, said that in order to boost competitiveness, factors that may affect readiness during disasters must be looked into carefully.

With climate change affecting every corner of the world, Luz said that “we must be prepared”.

“Today, you don’t know anymore where the typhoon could hit so we have to plan. We have to study our risk assessment data based on weather forecasts because storms can hit us anytime,” he said.

Luz said Davao City has high risk in terms of climate change impact, thus, it really has to make an analysis of the risk assessment report of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

In a study conducted by WWF among the cities of Baguio, Cebu, Davao, and Iloilo in 2011, it was stated that “it is likely that Davao City will have to deal with climate impacts such as sea level rise, increased sea surface temperatures, ocean acidification, and inter-annual variability of rainfall”.

The study added that “for Davao City, high population growth and in-migration underscores that strategic development decisions must be made now. More than that, a multi-stakeholder formula for continuity must be set in place if this city is to sustain and re-engineer its agricultural strengths, and avoid the disorganized congestion that characterizes many other cities, emerging as a new center for liveability and competitiveness in a climate-defined world”.

Given the said situation, Luz said, planning is crucial.

“Davao should look at these data closely,” he said.

Luz said the experiences during Typhoons Ondoy in 2009, Sendong in 2010, Pablo in 2012, and Yolanda this year must serve as a great lesson for everyone.

He pointed out that if a city or a certain area is not prepared for disasters and doesn’t have any mitigating measures on climate, it will be difficult to entice investors.

“No businessman can afford to be down by two weeks, even just for two days. No electricity, no communication, that’s bad for business,” he said.

Luz said that having no downtime, even during disasters, must be the dream of every city.

Original Source: news.pia.gov.ph