Albay Province Piloting Innovations in Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change in the Philippines
With the Philippines’ most active volcanoes, exposure to torrential rains and strong typhoons that affect livelihoods and settlements, strong weather changes, and frequent passages of tropical cyclones, Albay Province is facing significant challenges with regard to disaster risk reduction and climate change. A capacity assessment was conducted to identify capacity gaps and assets.
The analysis looked at both technical and functional capacities particularly of the involved government agencies and institutions at three levels – the policy level, the organizational level, and the individual level. Based on the results, a comprehensive capacity development program, tools and strategies to strengthen national and local capacities for climate change adaptation (CCA) and disaster risk reduction (DRR) was designed in 2010.
- The comprehensive capacity development program for Albay Province on climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction has led to a successful local governance reform and transformation
- Albay now has the capacity and tools to detect climate related risks and undertake adequate measures in emergency situations
- The first Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Academy has been established. Much investment has been made in public education and dialogue has been generated across sectors and various stakeholders
Albay now has the SimCLIM software to undertake risk mapping and develop a corresponding land use plan, and establish early warning systems; to train emergency medical teams; to undertake evacuation planning exercises; to purchase rubber boats and ambulances; to set up resettlement areas and livelihood programs for survivors of calamities; and to educate communities.
The success of Albay as a local governance reform and transformation model in the areas of CCA and DRR, is further evident in its innovative solutions such as the first Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Academy for local government units. The economic program initially designed as a solution for evacuating and rebuilding affected communities also evolved into the province’s most innovative and ambitious initiatives to date, the geostrategic GUIDACALE Business Platform about to be launched.
Albay has also made dedicated investments in knowledge and learning such as including DRR/CCA into the public education curriculum, and promoting dialogue between DRR/CCA experts and development practitioners in the field. Improved coordination between various stakeholders has also resulted in more innovative ideas, such as securing private sector sponsorship for civic activities raising awareness about the shared responsibility for environmentally sustainable development.
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