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China - Taiwan Province: Taiwan, China, Japan, Philippines - Tropical Cyclone Nepartak - ECHO Daily Map | 07/07/2016

7 July 2016 - 10:58pm
Source: European Commission Humanitarian Aid Office Country: China, China - Taiwan Province, Japan, Philippines

Situation

• TC NEPARTAK is moving towards south-eastern Taiwan, as a very intense Tropical Cyclone. On 7 July at 12.00 UTC its centre was located approx. 170 km southeast of Taitung City and it had max. sustained winds of 259 km/h (equivalent to a Category 5 in the Saffir-Simpson scale).

• It is forecast to make landfall near the city of Taitung on 7 July evening (UTC), with max. sustained winds of 220-260 km/h. Then it will cross Taiwan, weakening, and it may reach Fujian province (eastern China) on 8 July evening (UTC), with max. sustained winds of 100-120 km/h. Heavy rain, strong winds and storm surge may affect several areas of Taiwan on 7-8 July, as well as Fujian and Zhejiang provinces (China) on 8-10 July. Heavy rain and strong winds may affect the Batanes islands (Philippines).

• As of 7 July afternoon (UTC), a Sea and Land Typhoon Warning is in effect for most of Taiwan, an Extremely Torrential Rain Advisory for the counties of Yilan, Hualien, Taitung and Pingtung, and for Kaohsiung City. Torrential Rain and Extremely Heavy Rain Advisories are also in effect for the rest of Taiwan. An Orange Warning for Typhoon is in effect for eastern mainland China, a Tropical Cyclone Warning Signal No 2 for the the Batanes group of islands.

• Local media reported several flights cancelled from Manila (Philippines) and Taiwan, as well as several highways and railway stations closed throughout Taiwan, as of 7 July.

World: Zika virus, Microcephaly and Guillain-Barré syndrome Situation Report, 7 July 2016

7 July 2016 - 4:06pm
Source: World Health Organization Country: American Samoa, Barbados, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Brazil, Cabo Verde, Cambodia, Colombia, Cook Islands, Costa Rica, Curaçao (The Netherlands), Dominican Republic, Easter Island (Chile), Ecuador, El Salvador, Fiji, French Guiana (France), French Polynesia (France), Gabon, Guadeloupe (France), Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Indonesia, Jamaica, Maldives, Martinique (France), Mexico, New Caledonia (France), Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Philippines, Puerto Rico (The United States of America), Saint Martin (France), Samoa, Solomon Islands, Suriname, Thailand, Tonga, United States of America, United States Virgin Islands, Vanuatu, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), World
Summary
  • WHO and partners have established a definition of what constitutes an outbreak, endemic transmission, and the interruption of vector-borne transmission in order to better characterize the level of transmission of Zika virus infection (Table 1, Fig. 2). In addition, this will facilitate public health recommendations for residents and travellers. Based on these definitions, countries and territories reporting mosquito-borne Zika virus transmission were reclassified.

  • As of 6 July 2016, 65 countries and territories (Fig. 1, Table 1) have reported evidence of vector-borne Zika virus transmission since 2007 (62 of these countries and territories have reported evidence of vector-borne Zika virus transmission since 2015):

  • 48 countries and territories with a first reported outbreak from 2015 onwards (Table 1).

  • Four countries are classified as having possible endemic transmission or have reported evidence of local vector-borne Zika infections in 2016.

  • 13 countries and territories have reported evidence of local vector-borne Zika infections in or before 2015, but without documentation of cases in 2016, or with outbreak terminated.

  • Guinea-Bissau is the latest country to report mosquito-borne Zika virus transmission.

  • Eleven countries have reported evidence of person-to-person transmission of Zika virus, probably via a sexual route (Table 2). Spain is the latest country to report Zika infection through person-to-person transmission.

  • As of 6 July 2016, microcephaly and other central nervous system (CNS) malformations potentially associated with Zika virus infection or suggestive of congenital infection have been reported by 13 countries or territories. Three of those countries reported microcephaly cases born from mothers with a recent travel history to Zika-affected countries in Latin America (Table 3).

  • As of 6 July, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (US-CDC) reported seven live-born infants with birth defects and five pregnancy losses with birth defects with laboratory evidence of possible Zika virus infection.

  • In the context of Zika virus circulation, 15 countries and territories worldwide have reported an increased incidence of Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) and/or laboratory confirmation of a Zika virus infection among GBS cases (Table 4).

  • Based on research to date, there is scientific consensus that Zika virus is a cause of microcephaly and GBS.

  • A case of GBS has recently been confirmed positive for Zika virus in Jamaica.

  • Zika virus infections were diagnosed in eight cases with severe neurologic conditions in Guadeloupe.

  • A WHO mission to Guinea-Bissau will be conducted to assist in understanding the lineage of the Zika virus detected in the country using viral sequencing. The mission will also focus on the identification of priority activities to strengthen national response capacity.

  • The global Strategic Response Framework launched by WHO in February 2016 encompasses surveillance, response activities and research. An interim report3 describing some of the key activities being undertaken jointly by WHO and international, regional and national partners in response to this public health emergency was published on 27 May 2016. A revised strategy for the period of July 2016 to December 2017 was published on 17 June.

  • WHO has developed new advice and information on diverse topics in the context of Zika virus.5 WHO’s latest information materials, news and resources to support corporate and programmatic risk communication and community engagement are available online.

China - Taiwan Province: Taiwan, China, Japan, Philippines - Tropical Cyclone Nepartak Update (GDACS, JTWC, CWB Taiwan, CMA, NDRRMC, PAGASA, JMA, Local Media) (ECHO Daily Flash of 07 July 2016)

7 July 2016 - 10:29am
Source: European Commission Humanitarian Aid Office Country: China, China - Taiwan Province, Japan, Philippines

◾TC NEPARTAK continued its north-western motion over the Philippine Sea, maintaining its intensity. On 7 July at 0.00 UTC its centre was located approx. 360 km south-east of Taitung province (Taiwan) and 260 km north-east of Itbayat island (Batanes province, Philippines) and it had max. sustained wind speed of 278 km/h (equivalent to a Category 5 in the Saffir-Simpson scale).

◾Over the next 48 h it is forecast to continue moving north-east slightly weakening but maintaining a very intense Tropical Cyclone. It may make landfall along the eastern coast of Taiwan, near the border between Taitung and Hualien counties on 7 July afternoon (UTC), with max. sustained wind speed of 220-260 km/h. After the landfall, it is forecast to cross Taiwan weakening and reach Fijian province (eastern China) on 8 July afternoon/evening (UTC), with max. sustained wind speed of approx. 120-140 km/h.

◾Heavy rain, strong winds and storm surge may affect several areas of Taiwan on 7-8 July, as well as Fujian and Zhejiang provinces (China) on 8-10 July. Heavy rain and strong winds may also affect the southern Ryukyu islands (Japan) and the Batanes islands (Philippines).

◾As of 7 July early morning (UTC), a Sea and Land Typhoon Warning is in effect for most of Taiwan, an Extremely Heavy Rain Advisory for the counties of Taitung, Hualien, Yilan, Lanyu and Ludao (Taiwan), an Orange Warning for Typhoon for eastern mainland China, a Tropical Cyclone Warning Signal No 2 for the the Batanes group of islands and No 1 for the Calayan and Babuyan group of islands, as well as a Red Warning for high waves for the Yaeyama and Miyako group of islands (Okinawa prefecture, Japan).

◾Local media reported several flights cancelled from Manila (Philippines) and Taiwan, as of 7 July early morning (UTC).

Philippines: Philippine army: 10 dead in clashes with Islamic militants

7 July 2016 - 9:18am
Source: Agence France-Presse Country: Philippines

Manila, Philippines | AFP | Thursday 7/7/2016 - 12:58 GMT

Philippine government forces fought hundreds of Islamic militants on two remote islands Thursday, with the military aircraft-backed campaign leaving up to 10 people dead, the army said.

The gun battles on the southern islands of Jolo and Basilan followed orders by new President Rodrigo Duterte for the security services to go after the Abu Sayyaf, which recently beheaded two foreign hostages and is also blamed for the worst terror attacks in Philippine history.

The fighting was continuing late Thursday with more troops being rushed in, backed by military aircraft and artillery, regional military spokesman Major Filemon Tan told reporters.

"Continuous indirect fire support and air strikes are being done and additional troops were deployed," he added without giving details.

Army troops hunting down Abu Sayyaf units clashed with about 130 of the gunmen near the Jolo town of Patikul, killing a soldier and wounding six others, Tan said.

Military intelligence reports later determined that nine Abu Sayyaf members were also killed and 13 others wounded, he added.

Meanwhile up to 200 Abu Sayyaf gunmen have been fighting running gun battles with government forces in three Basilan towns since late Wednesday, Tan said, but did not say if there were casualties.

The Jolo militants are believed to be holding a Norwegian resort manager abducted elsewhere in the south in September last year and a Dutch birdwatcher kidnapped in 2012.

Tan did not reply when asked about the impact of the fighting on the hostages.

The Abu Sayyaf beheaded in April and June two Canadian tourists who were kidnapped along with the Norwegian, while a Filipina who was abducted with them was freed last month.

The Abu Sayyaf is a loose network of a few hundred Islamic militants, formed in the 1990s with seed money from Osama bin Laden's Al-Qaeda network, that has earned millions of dollars from kidnappings-for-ransom.

Although its leaders have pledged allegiance to Islamic State, analysts say they are mainly focused on lucrative kidnappings.

Last month, as Duterte prepared to assume office after winning the May presidential elections by landslide on a law and order platform, he ordered the military defeat the Abu Sayyaf.

"Our first priority is the Abu Sayyaf because that is the order of our new president: address the Abu Sayyaf immediately so we can neutralise them," Delfin Lorenzana told reporters before he was sworn in as defence secretary.

str-cgm/aph

© 1994-2016 Agence France-Presse

Bangladesh: EU provides €12.3 million to enhance disaster preparedness capacity across Asia and the Pacific

7 July 2016 - 1:20am
Source: European Commission Humanitarian Aid Office Country: Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Lao People's Democratic Republic (the), Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Philippines, Thailand, Viet Nam

Bangkok, 7 July 2016 – The European Commission is making available € 12.3 million to strengthen the capacity of disaster-prone countries across Asia and the Pacific to prepare for and protect themselves from recurring natural disasters. Almost half of the world’s natural disasters last year occurred in Asia and the Pacific, causing large-scale losses of lives and assets.

“The European Commission's funding will help people in countries in Asia and the Pacific to increase their preparedness when disasters strike. The funds will support projects aiming to reduce the impact of natural hazards and build resilience amongst the most vulnerable communities in 11 countries across the region. It is of paramount importance that people in these vulnerable countries are given the necessary means and knowledge to face these recurrent events in the best possible way”, said Christos Stylianides, EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management.

The EU funds will be provided to humanitarian partner organisations such as international non-government organisations (INGOs), UN agencies and the Red Cross and Red Crescent family, to implement the initiatives in Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, Lao PDR, the Philippines, North Korea, Nepal, Mongolia, Vietnam, Myanmar and Thailand.

Asia and the Pacific is the world’s most disaster-prone region, with at least 160 disasters taking place in the region last year, out of 344 recorded globally. These events often have greater impacts on the most vulnerable populations, who are less prepared to cope with these hazards. According to the United Nations’ Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), catastrophic events resulted in the deaths of more than 16 000 people and left close to 59.3 million others affected across the region in 2015.

The latest allocation brings the Commission’s total funding for disaster preparedness programmes in Asia-Pacific to more than € 140 million since 1996, including almost € 27 million in the last funding cycle (2014-2015), covering 18 most disaster-prone countries across the region.

Background

Asia-Pacific encompasses a broad array of high-risk zones such as river basins, flood plains, seismic fault lines and volcanic landforms. Its vast and diverse landmass allows for varied and extreme weather patterns, ranging from floods to cyclones and droughts. Climate change, rapid urbanisation and rising population densities in disaster-prone areas may also result in more frequent and intense hazards in the future.

Since 1996, the European Commission has funded a number of disaster preparedness programmes across Asia and the Pacific. These initiatives typically focus on providing most-at-risk populations with better know-how and practical training whilst supporting the involvement of local, regional and national authorities. Last year, for example, when a 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck central Nepal, a then-ongoing medical preparedness initiative proved life-saving from the very first hours of the emergency: past training of medical staff on trauma protocols, the stockpiling of medical supplies and non-structural retrofitting of hospitals all ensured that targeted health premises in the capital city, Kathmandu, were equipped to cope with the devastating impact of the earthquake and health personnel able to perform their emergency duties without delay. Besides Nepal, other vulnerable countries, namely Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Sri Lanka,

Pakistan, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Cambodia, Indonesia, Thailand, North Korea, Lao PDR, Myanmar, the Philippines and Vietnam, also benefited from EU-funded preparedness projects between 2014 and 2015.

In addition to dedicated disaster preparedness initiatives, the Commission also encourages the integration of disaster risk reduction interventions into all EU-funded humanitarian operations.

Contact

Pierre Prakash, Regional Information Officer for Asia and the Pacific, European Commission Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection department (ECHO): +66 89 811 54 81, Pierre.Prakash@echofield.eu

World: EU provides € 12.3 million to enhance disaster preparedness capacity across Asia and the Pacific

7 July 2016 - 1:20am
Source: European Commission Humanitarian Aid Office Country: Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Lao People's Democratic Republic (the), Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Philippines, Thailand, Viet Nam, World

Bangkok, 7 July 2016 – The European Commission is making available € 12.3 million to strengthen the capacity of disaster-prone countries across Asia and the Pacific to prepare for and protect themselves from recurring natural disasters. Almost half of the world’s natural disasters last year occurred in Asia and the Pacific, causing large-scale losses of lives and assets.

“The European Commission's funding will help people in countries in Asia and the Pacific to increase their preparedness when disasters strike. The funds will support projects aiming to reduce the impact of natural hazards and build resilience amongst the most vulnerable communities in 11 countries across the region. It is of paramount importance that people in these vulnerable countries are given the necessary means and knowledge to face these recurrent events in the best possible way”, said Christos Stylianides, EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management.

The EU funds will be provided to humanitarian partner organisations such as international non-government organisations (INGOs), UN agencies and the Red Cross and Red Crescent family, to implement the initiatives in Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, Lao PDR, the Philippines, North Korea, Nepal, Mongolia, Vietnam, Myanmar and Thailand.

Asia and the Pacific is the world’s most disaster-prone region, with at least 160 disasters taking place in the region last year, out of 344 recorded globally. These events often have greater impacts on the most vulnerable populations, who are less prepared to cope with these hazards. According to the United Nations’ Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), catastrophic events resulted in the deaths of more than 16 000 people and left close to 59.3 million others affected across the region in 2015.

The latest allocation brings the Commission’s total funding for disaster preparedness programmes in Asia-Pacific to more than € 140 million since 1996, including almost € 27 million in the last funding cycle (2014-2015), covering 18 most disaster-prone countries across the region.

Background

Asia-Pacific encompasses a broad array of high-risk zones such as river basins, flood plains, seismic fault lines and volcanic landforms. Its vast and diverse landmass allows for varied and extreme weather patterns, ranging from floods to cyclones and droughts. Climate change, rapid urbanisation and rising population densities in disaster-prone areas may also result in more frequent and intense hazards in the future.

Since 1996, the European Commission has funded a number of disaster preparedness programmes across Asia and the Pacific. These initiatives typically focus on providing most-at-risk populations with better know-how and practical training whilst supporting the involvement of local, regional and national authorities. Last year, for example, when a 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck central Nepal, a then-ongoing medical preparedness initiative proved life-saving from the very first hours of the emergency: past training of medical staff on trauma protocols, the stockpiling of medical supplies and non-structural retrofitting of hospitals all ensured that targeted health premises in the capital city, Kathmandu, were equipped to cope with the devastating impact of the earthquake and health personnel able to perform their emergency duties without delay. Besides Nepal, other vulnerable countries, namely Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Sri Lanka,

Pakistan, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Cambodia, Indonesia, Thailand, North Korea, Lao PDR, Myanmar, the Philippines and Vietnam, also benefited from EU-funded preparedness projects between 2014 and 2015.

In addition to dedicated disaster preparedness initiatives, the Commission also encourages the integration of disaster risk reduction interventions into all EU-funded humanitarian operations.

Contact

Pierre Prakash, Regional Information Officer for Asia and the Pacific, European Commission Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection department (ECHO): +66 89 811 54 81, Pierre.Prakash@echofield.eu

China - Taiwan Province: Taiwan, Japan, Philippines – Tropical Cyclone Nepartak - ECHO Daily Map | 06/07/2016

7 July 2016 - 12:40am
Source: European Commission Humanitarian Aid Office Country: China, China - Taiwan Province, Japan, Philippines

SITUATION

  • TC NEPARTAK continued moving north-west over the north-western Pacific Ocean, strengthening and entering the Philippine Area of Responsibility. On 6 July at 6.00 UTC its centre was located approx. 840 km south-east of Hualien county (Taiwan) and it had max. sustained wind speed of 278 km/h (equivalent to a Category 5 in the Saffir-Simpson scale).

  • Over the next 48 h, it is forecast to continue moving north-west and it may make landfall along the eastern coast of Taiwan, near the border between of Hualien and Taitung counties on 7 July afternoon (UTC), slightly weakened, but still remaining a very intense Typhoon with max. sustained winds of 240-260 km/h. After the landfall it is forecast to cross Taiwan, slightly weakening and reach Fijian province (eastern China) on 8 July afternoon, still as a Typhoon. However the uncertainty of the forecast track/intensity is still high. According to the forecast of 6 July, 06:00 UTC, strong winds, heavy rain (with the risk of flash floods and landslides) and storm surge may affect several areas of Taiwan on 7-8 July, as well as Fujian and Zhejiang provinces (China) on 8-10 July, already affected by floods over the last 10 days. Heavy rain and strong winds may also affect the southern Ryukyu Islands (Japan) and the Batanes islands (Philippines).

  • As of 6 July early afternoon (UTC), a Sea and Land Typhoon Warning is in effect for the counties of Hualien, Taitung, Ludao and Lanyu, an Orange Warning for Typhoon is in effect for eastern mainland China and a Tropical Cyclone Warning Signal No 1 is in effect for the Batanes group of islands.

Deadliest Tropical Cyclone in Taiwan

  • TC MORAKOT was the deadliest Typhoon in Taiwan with over 630 dead. It reached central Taiwan on 7 August 2009 with max. suStained winds of 140 km/h several but it produced extremely heavy rains (over 3 000 mm) during its passage, that triggered landslides and floods, especially in the southern areas (500 people died in Siaolin village due to a landslide,
    Kaohsiung municipality).

Sources: GDACS, JTWC, JMA, CWB Taiwan, PAGASA, NDRRMC, NASA , Local Media

Philippines: NDRRMC Update: SitRep No. 03 re Preparedness Measures for Typhoon "Butchoy" (I.N. Nepartak)

6 July 2016 - 8:00pm
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines

DATE: 07 July 2016, 6:00 PM

I. SITUATION OVERVIEW

At 4:00 PM today, Typhoon "Butchoy" continues to slow down as it approaches Taiwan. Its eye was located based on all available data at 160 km northeast of Itbayat, Batanes with maximum sustained winds of 205 kph near the center and gustiness of up to 240 kph. It is forecast to move west northwest at 17 kmh. Tropical Cyclone Warning Signal was raised: No. 2 over Batanes Group of Islands; and No. 1 over Babuyan Group of Islands, while Southwest Monsoon is affecting Luzon and Visayas.

World: World: 2016-2017 ENSO Overview (As of 5 July 2016)

6 July 2016 - 4:34pm
Source: World Food Programme, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Food Security Cluster Country: Angola, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Botswana, Cambodia, Chad, Colombia, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Djibouti, Ecuador, El Salvador, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Indonesia, Kenya, Lao People's Democratic Republic (the), Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mongolia, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nicaragua, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan, Swaziland, Timor-Leste, Viet Nam, World, Zambia, Zimbabwe

Globally, millions of vulnerable people are experiencing increased hunger and poverty due to droughts, floods, storms and extreme temperature fluctuations as a result of a climatic occurrence: El Niño. This phenomenon is not an individual weather event but a climate pattern which occurs every two to seven years and lasts 9-12 months. The 2015/2016 occurrence is one of the most severe in a half-century and the strongest El Niño since 1997/1998 which killed some 21,000 people and caused damage to infrastructure worth US$ 36 billion. The negative consequences of El Niño are foreseen to continue through 2017, particularly in Southern Africa where this event has followed multiple droughts compounding the already fragile situation. It is critical that an adequate and sustained response is implemented in order to safeguard decades of development gains. More than US$2 billion are required to support food security and agriculture programmes globally through 2017.

Philippines: NDRRMC Update: SitRep No. 02 re Preparedness Measures for Typhoon "Butchoy" (I.N. Nepartak)

6 July 2016 - 11:09am
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines

DATE: 06 July 2016, 6:00 PM

I. SITUATION OVERVIEW

At 4:00 PM today, Typhoon "Butchoy" continues to gain strength as it moves northwest towards Taiwan. Its eye was located based on all available data at 615 km east of Basco, Batanes with maximum sustained winds of 210 kph. It is forecast to move northwest at 30 kmh. Tropical Cyclone Warning Signal was raised over Batanes Group of Islands, while Southwest Monsoon is affecting Southern Luzon and Visayas.

Philippines: NDRRMC Update: SitRep No. 01 re Preparedness Measures for Typhoon "Butchoy" (I.N. Nepartak)

5 July 2016 - 11:58pm
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines

DATE: 05 July 2016, 6:00 PM

I. SITUATION OVERVIEW

At 2:00 PM, 05 July 2016, Typhoon (TY) "NEPARTAK" entered the Phillipine Area of Responsibility (PAR) and was named "BUTCHOY". It has a maximum sustained winds of 120 kph near the center and gustiness of up to 150 kph, moving Northwest at 30 kph. The estimated rainfall amount is from moderate to heavy within the 300 km diameter of the typhoon.

Based on 05 July 2016, 5:00 PM PAGASA assessment, TY "BUTCHOY" is not expected to make landfall, however, it will enhance the Southwest Monsoon (**Habagat**) which will bring occasional rains over Southern Luzon and Visayas until Tuesday, 12 July 2016.

Floods and landslides are expected over the provinces of Mindoro, Bataan, Zambales, Pangasinan, Benguet and Panay island.

Tropical Cyclone Warning Signal may be raised over extreme Northern Luzon by Wednesday, 06 July 2016 or early Thursday, 07 July 2016. Gale Warning is expected to commence on Wednesday in Vasayas and Palawan and on Thursday in Luzon.

TY "BUTCHOY" is expected to exit PAR on 08 July 2016.

Philippines: North-Western Pacific Ocean – Tropical Cyclone Nepartak - ECHO Daily Map | 05/07/2016

5 July 2016 - 9:28pm
Source: European Commission Humanitarian Aid Office Country: China, China - Taiwan Province, Philippines

SITUATION

• Tropical Cyclone NEPARTAK formed over the north-western Pacific Ocean near the island of Guam (USA) on 3 July. It then started moving north-west, strengthening and entering the Philippine Area of Responsibility. On 5 July at 6.00 UTC its center was located approx. 1 670 km south-eastern of northern Taiwan and it had max. sustained wind speed of 157 km/h.

• Over the next 48 h it is forecast to continue moving north-west over open waters, strengthening. It may move near or over northern Taiwan over 7-8 July as an intense Tropical Cyclone. Heavy rain and strong winds may affect the areas along its path.

Recent floods and landslides in China

• Severe weather including heavy rain, strong winds and hail, has been recently affecting several parts of China especially the south-eastern parts causing floods and landslides.

• National authorities reported 128 people dead, 42 missing, over 132 000 evacuated and more than 289 000 homes partially or fully damaged in several provinces of the country, as of 5 July.

• Heavy rain and strong winds may affect the south-eastern areas of the country after 8 July due to TC NEPARTAK which is approaching.

Sources: GDACS, JTWC, NRDDMC, PAGASA, CWB Taiwan, CMA, Local Media

World: La Niña: Early warning – early action analysis for a potential La Niña in 2016 – 2017

5 July 2016 - 1:54pm
Source: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations Country: Argentina, Bangladesh, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Chile, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Gambia, Indonesia, Kenya, Malaysia, Mali, Mauritania, Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Philippines, Senegal, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Uruguay, World

Global overview

What is La Niña?

La Niña is the cooling of sea surface temperatures in the tropical Pacific, which occurs roughly every three to five years, lasting from six to 24 months. The chances of La Niña following an El Niño episode are higher on average — half of the El Niño events are followed by a La Niña — and typically it affects global climate patterns in the opposite way El Niño does. The intensity of the La Niña climatic phenomenon generally peaks between October and January.

Purpose of this report

The aim of this report is to consolidate information on La Niña’s potential impacts on agriculture and food security, specifically in the regions which are now dealing with the consequences of EL Niño, and to provide early action recommendations in the agriculture sector to either reap the beneficial outcomes of La Niña, or prevent, mitigate and prepare for its negative effects.

What is the current forecast for La Niña?

Current forecasts indicate that there is a 55 to 70 percent chance of a La Niña episode developing towards the end of 2016, with a slightly lower chance that the onset may occur as early as July. The timing of a La Niña onset is key to determine how its consequences will impact on agriculture.

What are the main consequences of La Niña for agriculture and food security?

A La Niña phenomena generally affects the same regions that are impacted by El Niño, with opposite climatic consequences. Areas which experienced dry conditions (below-average rainfall and/or increased temperature) during El Niño, for instance, tend to receive above-average rainfall and in some cases cooler temperatures.

While the climatic phenomenon usually peaks in intensity between October and January, changes to climatic patterns and their related impacts on food security and agriculture can happen both before and after the peak. It’s possible that La Niña could develop as early as July, in which case it might already start affecting the growing seasons in some parts of the world from September 2016.

Consequences of La Niña on agriculture and food security can be both positive and negative. The positive effects derive from the increased likelihood of above average rainfall which could improve pasture and crop yields. At the same time, if the above-average rainfall results in flooding, then clearly the results may be negative as in this case there is an increased incidence of seeds being washed away, landslides, crops destroyed and livestock morbidity and mortality. Since La Niña would most likely impact regions that have already been affected by El Niño, the food security situation could further deteriorate and protract into 2018. In the event of a “positive” La Niña, it is important to highlight that the actual full effect of a above average rainfall will not be felt until the next harvest — i.e. the end of 2016 (if La Niña comes early) or by mid-2017 (if La Niña occurs later).

Philippines: NDRRMC tells public to prepare for effects of ‘habagat’

5 July 2016 - 4:18am
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines

QUEZON CITY, July 5 (PIA) -- The new executive director of the National Disaster Risk Reduction Council Ricardo Jalad emphasized to the public the need to prepare for the possible consequences of the southwest monsoon (habagat) that would bring frequent rains affecting Southern Luzon and Visayas.

This he stressed after holding his first Pre-Disaster Risk Assessment with the council’s core members yesterday to prepare for the possible risks of Tropical Storm NEPARTAK (Butchoy) that will enter the Philippine Area of Responsibility this afternoon.

Experts from PAGASA reported that while the said storm won’t make landfall in the Philippines, floods and landslides are still expected over the provinces of Bataan, Zambales and Pangasinan due to habagat

The Department of Interior and Local Government has issued a La Nina advisory to all provincial governors, city and municipal mayors, and DILG regional directors.

Local government units were encouraged to immediately convene their Local Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council as the need be and closely coordinate with PAGASA for timely weather updates and with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources- Mines and Geoscience Bureau (DENR-MGB) for adequate information on the threat of flooding and landslides.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has prepared its 18 regional warehouses maintaining 30,000 family food packs ready for prepositioning at the LGU.

It has also built eight pilot evacuation center cum multi-purpose building in 6 regions (2,3,4A,5, 6, and CARAGA). A center is being built in Region 1 while another center is yet to be built in Region 8.

The NDRRMC will raise its alert level into blue effective 3PM today. (FGM-PIA)

World: Women in armed groups and fighting forces: lessons learned from gender-sensitive DDR programmes

5 July 2016 - 3:40am
Source: Norwegian Peacebuilding Resource Centre Country: Angola, Burundi, Colombia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Liberia, Mozambique, Nepal, Philippines, Sierra Leone, South Africa, World

By Elisa Tarnaala

Executive summary

Despite their involvement in strategic, material and logistical support and combat, women’s roles as “soldiers” and “victims” are narrowly defined by post-conflict programmes. Most disarmament, demobilisation and reintegration (DDR) programmes are limited in the ways in which issues specific to female combatants are addressed. Gender-sensitive DDR programming must be linked into the entire peace process, from the peace negotiations through peacekeeping and subsequent peacebuilding activities. This process should include issues such as identifying women and setting the appropriate criteria for their entering DDR processes; understanding identity issues and obstacles facing women’s post-conflict political participation; targeting women as larger units with their children and partners rather than merely as individuals; addressing female health and psychosocial needs; and sensitisation to the particular issues around the gender dimensions of violence and community acceptance. This report highlights lessons learned from gender and DDR processes and notes that with regard to territorial implementation, national DDR commissions should be encouraged to work closely with government entities in charge of gender and women’s affairs, and – especially where governments are responsible for all or part of the DDR process – with women’s peacebuilding networks that can serve as bridges in the transition to civilian life, and facilitate social, political and economic reintegration.

World: 2015–2016 El Niño: Early action and response for agriculture, food security and nutrition - Update # 9

4 July 2016 - 11:28pm
Source: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations Country: Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Botswana, Cambodia, Chad, Colombia, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Fiji, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Indonesia, Lao People's Democratic Republic (the), Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Marshall Islands, Mongolia, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nicaragua, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Vanuatu, Viet Nam, World, Zambia, Zimbabwe
What is El Niño?

El Niño is the warming of sea surface temperatures in the tropical Pacific, which occurs roughly every two to seven years, lasting from six to 24 months.

While reduced rainfall and drought is a key outcome of El Niño, the phenomenon can also cause heavy rains and flooding. Impacts of El Niño on agriculture and food security depend on a complex interplay of meteorological factors and range from minor to severe. The current 2015–16 El Niño is notable in terms of its strength and also its negative impact on crop production, livestock and agricultural livelihoods around the globe.

Background and purpose

The impact of the 2015–16 El Niño weather phenomenon has been one of the most intense and widespread in the past one hundred years. The agriculture, food security and nutritional status of 60 million people around the globe is affected by El Niño-related droughts, floods and extreme hot and cold weather. While the El Niño itself has passed its peak and is now declining, its impact is still growing. Harvests in several parts of the world have already failed and are forecast to fail in other areas.

This report provides a global analysis of the current and expected evolution of El Niño-related disasters and their impact on agriculture, food security and nutrition. It aims to give a consolidated outlook of the situation and the early actions being taken by governments, partners and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). Analysis in the report is divided between FAO high priority countries (pp 5-31) and other countries at risk (pp 32-43). Countries were selected based on a combination of analysis of the El Niño event and FAO priorities for strengthening the resilience of livelihoods to threats and crises.

In view of the rapid evolution of the El Niño phenomenon, this report is updated regularly. It is part of a more general effort by FAO to increase the resilience of rural populations threatened by crises, including extreme climatic events such as El Niño. Given the high degree of exposure and vulnerability of populations to such events, the need for a focus on resilience building is clear. A recent ten-year analysis led by FAO’s Climate, Energy and Tenure Division showed that 25 percent of all damage caused during natural disasters is in the agriculture sector. For drought, agriculture is the single most affected sector, absorbing around 84 percent of all the economic impact.

Regional Highlights Africa
  • Ethiopia – an estimated 10.2 million people are still in need of food and non-food assistance in 2016. Malnutrition rates across the country remain extremely high, with over one-third of Ethiopia’s woredas classified as facing a food security and nutrition crisis.

  • Somalia – drought has been declared in Puntland and Somaliland, where some communities have not experienced normal rains for up to four seasons, spanning two years. Nearly 4.7 million people are food insecure. Of this figure, 1.7 million people are in Puntland and Somaliland.

  • Southern Africa – latest estimates by SADC indicate that 39.7 million people are projected to be food insecure by the peak of the 2016/17 lean season. Regional cereal balance sheet analysis (excluding DRC, Madagascar, Mauritius, Seychelles and Tanzania) shows overall cereal deficit of about 9.3 million tonnes. Lesotho, Malawi, Swaziland and Zimbabwe have declared drought emergencies. The forecast continues to indicate drier than normal conditions.

  • Sudan – 4.6 million people are acutely food insecure, primarily due to the effects of El Niño, and is likely to increase due to below-average agricultural production in 2015, rising staple food prices, very poor pasture conditions and continued conflict.

Latin America and the Caribbean
  • Haiti – an estimated 3.6 million are food insecure. The 2015 cereal harvest was the lowest in 12 years with losses as high as 90 percent in most affected areas.

  • Central America – currently experiencing the worst drought in decades, which is affecting food insecurity for a second consecutive year, with over 3.5 million people in need of humanitarian assistance after suffering major crop losses due to prolonged drought conditions. Rainfall levels have remained abnormal and below-average due to the dissipating El Niño. It is likely that the region will continue experiencing extremely warm and dry conditions through to June 2016 in most countries, which may affect planting of the main 2016 “de primera” agricultural season.

Asia and the Pacific
  • Fiji – crop damage from recent Category 5 cyclones is combining with unusual rainfall patterns to intensify food security risks. Total damage to crops and livestock is estimated at USD 61 million.

  • Papua New Guinea – a third of the population – 2.7 million people – are affected by drought, frost and forest fires.

  • Viet Nam – more than 83 percent of the country has been affected by drought, of which 18 provinces have declared drought and saltwater intrusion emergencies at different levels.

Philippines: Philippines: Despite rains, some provinces still likely on drought forecast

4 July 2016 - 11:12pm
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines

DAVAO CITY July 4- Despite the onset of rains, some provinces in Mindanao are still listed as likely to experience drought by end of July.

According to PAGASA (Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration) forecast the provinces of Davao del Sur, South Cotabato, North Cotabato, Sarangani, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi will still be on drought.

Drought is defined as three consecutive months of way below normal rainfall condition (more than 60% reduction from average rainfall.

Guesting on Kapihan sa Philippine Information Agency media forum at the PIA-XI office in Davao City last July 1, Raul Montilla, weather observer of the PAGASA Davao Station, El Nino is in its neutral stage.

Montilla said the recent rains and cloudiness is brought about by the presence of the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ICTZ).

However they are monitoring for the onset of La Nina, a weather phenomenon characterized by unusually cool ocean surface temperatures in the central and eastern tropical Pacific.

Opposite of El Nino which brings below normal rainfall conditions. La Nina will be marked by above normal rainfall.

The effect of La Nina is the occurence of landslides and flash floods. (PIA/RG Alama)

Philippines: Philippines: La Niña preparations underway for NorMin

4 July 2016 - 11:09pm
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, July 4 – Department of Interior and Local Government in northern Mindanao has convened member agencies of the Disaster Preparedness Committee to carry out measures on the impending threat of La Niña in the coming months.

The latest advisory from the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) reports the El Niño as weakening and “in its decaying stage,” and the development of La Niña within the second half of 2016 (August 2016 to February 2017).

DILG Regional Director Arnel M. Agabe says we don’t want to be caught off guard hence we need to take the necessary precautions to mitigate the impacts of rain-related disasters on the security of people and communities.

Agabe also reminds the local government units (LGUs) to implement early preparedness action in the ‘Operation Listo’ manual for hydro-meteorological hazards.

Due to the numerous typhoons experienced by the Philippines every year, Oplan Listo was launched by DILG, led by then Secretary Mar Roxas, recalled Hazel L. Occeña, DILG 10 local government capability development division (LGCDD) chief, during an episode of “Lambo Dyes” radio program of the Philippine Information Agency (PIA) aired over DXIM Radyo Ng Bayan.

Oplan Listo or Operation Listo is a disaster preparedness guide for the LGUs, who are the first ones to respond in their places during disasters.

“During the time nga wala pa’y bagyo gasulod sa ilang lugar, naa na kami’y gihatag sa ila nga checklist kung unsa’y angay ipangandam para ma accomplish nila kung unsa gyud ang mga actions kung naa na’y muabotay nga bagyo,” she said.

(Before typhoons are experienced in their places, we already give them checklist on what needs to be prepared for them to accomplish the actions they need to do for the upcoming typhoon)

The DILG has also partnered with Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) on the “Gabay at Mapa” where they teach people what to do when disasters happen. This includes the E-balde which contains ready-to-eat food, three gallons of water, medicine, first aid kit, hygiene kit, clothes, flashlight and radio.

Preparations have been made for the anticipated La Niña in the country. Meetings with the Regional Risk Reduction Management Councils (RDRRMCs) are done to know the effects of La Niña and perform the La Niña Action Plan.

All these projects initiated by the DILG, as the vice-chair for preparedness, together with the different agencies do not only aim to ensure the safety of everyone during disasters, but educate the people as well on the disaster preparations, said Occeña. (Hazel Mae Pacturan/PIA)

Philippines: Government to address hunger through inter-agency collaboration

4 July 2016 - 7:15am
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines

The government will carry out concerted efforts to address hunger in the country through its frontline agencies, as more families claim they experience involuntary hunger based on the first quarter Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey.

“It’s being addressed by the proper departments,” Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella said in a press briefing in Malacanang on Monday when asked about the SWS survey result.

For instance, he said Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol has launched a program to combat hunger and malnutrition which he said is a symbolic measure of the government’s effort. “I cannot give you now the specific details as to the exact programs that are addressing it. But definitely, the Agriculture [department] is addressing that and so is DSWD (Department of Social Welfare and Development), the clusters are addressing that,” Abella said.

Pinol had earlier vowed to make milk feeding in public schools a nationwide program to eliminate malnutrition among children. This will also give dairy producers a market for their produce which has been a lingering problem for the industry.

Meanwhile, Abella said the conditional cash transfer program, which was a major anti-poverty program of the previous government, is also being reviewed.

Some 3.1 million Filipino families claimed to have experienced “involuntary hunger” in the first three months of 2016, with a significant rise noted in Mindanao, according to the SWS survey released on Monday. Results showed that some 2.6 million Filipinos experienced involuntary hunger at least once in the last three months of 2015. The survey was conducted from March 30 to April 2. PND (as)

Philippines: Philippines: Aid for 12,500 displaced people in Lanao del Sur

4 July 2016 - 6:35am
Source: International Committee of the Red Cross Country: Philippines

Manila (ICRC) – The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) expresses its concern for thousands of people from Butig, Lanao del Sur, who remain displaced following clashes between government forces and an armed group in late May to early June.

"Thousands of civilians in Butig were forced to flee their homes in February, when the first clashes began. Some were able to return in April, and just when they started planting a new crop, they were forced to flee their homes again in May, when hostilities resumed," said Dominic Earnshaw, head of the ICRC office in Cotabato.

"Now many of the displaced are living with relatives and depend heavily on their kin and the authorities, as they are still too afraid to go back home. Civilian houses were also destroyed in the fighting. We ask all sides in the conflict to exercise utmost precaution to protect civilians and their property," he added.

Between June 8 and July 2, the ICRC, together with the Philippine Red Cross (PRC), provided food and household items to around 12,500 people displaced from Butig. The distributions took place in Butig and neighboring Lumbayanague municipalities as well as in Marawi City. The ICRC-PRC assistance augmented the aid provided by the government and helped families meet their basic needs.

Each displaced family received 25 kilograms of rice, 12 tins of sardines, 2 liters of cooking oil, 2 liters of soy sauce, 2 kilograms of sugar, 500 grams of salt, and essential household items including two blankets, two mosquito nets, one sleeping mat, and one hygiene kit.

Prior to its relief operation in Butig, the ICRC conducted its own assessments and coordinated closely with community leaders, the Department of Social Welfare and Development, and nongovernment organizations.

The ICRC is a neutral, impartial, and independent humanitarian organization whose mandate is to protect and assist people affected by armed conflict and other situations of violence. It has had an established presence in the Philippines for more than 70 years and a permanent presence in Mindanao since 1982.