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Danger zones declared ‘no man’s land’ for good

by Othel V. Campos
[ ] August 4, 2011

Environment Secretary Ramon J.P. Paje is urging town and city mayors to declare as “no habitation zones” places in their localities that are prone to landslides and flashfloods.

“I am appealing to the LGUs to make use of the geohazard maps distributed by the Department in order to avoid loss of lives and properties especially at this critical time when the typhoons passing the country trigger heavy precipitation on land,” he said.

Paje asked local officials to use relocation sites identified by the Mines and Geosciences Bureau based on recent risk assessments.

Paje’s appeal was based on the landslide and flooding incidents caused by the recent typhoons that entered the country’s area of responsibility.

Following protocol, town or city authorities will have to evacuate inhabitants living in danger zones to relocation sites in times of impending typhoon or other weather disturbances that could bring about heavy rains.

Paje said 1:50,000-scale geohazard maps of the entire country have been distributed to 1,600 municipalities and cities and 4,000 barangays nationwide as part of the risk reduction strategy of the government backed by an information campaign.

He said the mines bureau has started on an updated version for release in two years on a 1:10,000 scale for a more detailed coverage.

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