The Philippines has a long way to go in weather forecasting.  For a long time, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration or popularly known as PAGASA has been waiting for its order of at least ten S-band Doppler Radars.  The first delivery being half of the lot.  This has not happened.

PAGASA has been relying in part on the steady stream of free inputs with its membership in the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA).  Certain quarters suggested the creation of a Philippine space agency in 2007 and a data communications (satellite) based agency as early as 1988.  No one listened to the proposals.  If the former Sec. Emilia Boncodin of the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) even singlehandedly torpedoed down the creation of the Congress-legislated National Transport Safety Board, much more a space agency. And because of Boncodin’s single act, the whole situation is so fucked up that tragic disasters and crises involving mishaps at sea have been happening left and right and can’t be stopped from happening in the future. There were those who unnecessarily criticized and lambasted the proponent of a Philippine space agency, a retiring engineer at PAGASA, as foolish.

The project proposed to create a functional data communication agency, the Philippine Satellite Communication Operation, Research and Development Council (PSCRDC) in 1988, at the diminishing level of euphoria over EDSA I was probably just thrown in the garbage can.  If real and pseudo scholars will check at the Records Office in Malacañang, there is heavy doubt if the document was even registered as received by the Office of the President, even under the heading of Classified matter.  The project paper had a stamp of SECRET all over it.

The PSCRDC was clearly envisioned to be a Philippine space agency and it preceded the idea submitted by Engr. Bernardo Soriano.  Soriano appears to be an admin man, although he should be equipped with a doctorate after serving more than 30 years in PAGASA.  Why he submitted the idea for PASA could be due to his years of experiencing faulty detection and forecasting at PAGASA.

The Philippine Government should review the PAGASA proposal now and not at any other later time.  S-band Radars are all right.  But is it state-of-the-art in storm detection radars (SDR)?  If the investment to buy 10 radars will not cover the entire archipelago, what is the use of having the Dopplers?

Will it not pay more to have a stronger space agency and to invest more inputs for a mechanism to generate more data from outer space than is available today for the country?  After all, how many end-users are there for satellite data?  Nearly everyone has a use for information from outer space, not the least of which are those in the field of environment management, business, civil and military aviation, shipping, land transport, logistics, defense, law enforcement and just about any Googler and ArcGIS map user out there that includes many students, teachers, professionals who know how to.  And if you count them all, the number runs to millions.

That in itself is already a huge market.  Considering that the Philippine business traffic overlaps with those of many other countries, there is also revenue potential in this area.

For this reason, Cyberpark Telecom, our company has extended its sights towards business that relies on outer space data and possibly to generate a positive relationship with Smart Communications in this regard.

While there is only one Philippine satellite, see data from SatNews below, there is also great good that will come about if the satellite were boosted and fully equipped with new components and gadgetry to increase its sensing capabilities and other functions.  And that is where we come in.  If the Agila II Satellite people will not accept our offer, we can go shopping for other partners.  There are hundreds of satellites, real and artificial orbiting in outer space. India alone has ten satellites.  Or we could opt to launch our own satellites in partnership with the Department of Science and Technology in the near future.

By then, government must have renamed the PAGASA into a Philippine Space Agency as Soriano dreamed of.  But today we urge the administration of HE  PGMA to start pushing its cluster of agencies to map out the strengthening of RP’s capacities for using outer space as a valuable resource in many of its concerns.

As we are advocating in Resource Recovery Movement, there is a need for policy regime change in the area of mapping as it relates to environment, to global warming, to its many applications in engineering, architectural township planning, urban development, agriculture, etc.

The link to information on the Agila II Satellite: SatNews

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From UNEP-OCHA:

Dear colleagues,

We at the Joint UNEP/OCHA Environnment Unit have become aware of the Hazard mapping and environmental summit you are organizing in April 2010. As part of efforts to improve the international response to environmental emergencies we have developed a tool to identify secondary environmental risks that industrial facilities and large infrastructure may pose when affected by a natural disaster: the Hazard Identification Tool (please see the attachment for further information). In addition to using this tool in response to emergencies, i.e. to identify environmental hazards after a disaster has struck, we have been exploring different ways to use the tool to identify and map hazards before the on-set of natural disasters, thereby
contributing to preparedness efforts.

It is before this background that we would like to inquire whether any contribution from our side could be of value to the Eco Summit and/or whether there might be other possibilities for collaboration. I would be happy to provide you with more details on our work in regards to environmental hazard identification.

Best regards,
Mirja Peters

(See attached file: HIT – One pager (09 Sep).pdf)

Ms. Mirja PETERS
Environmental Emergencies Unit (joint UNEP/OCHA)
Emergency Preparedness Section, Emergency Services Branch
United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)
Palais des Nations – bureau D-117
CH 1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland
Phone: +41 22 917 1590
Fax: +41 22 917 0257
E-mail: petersm@un.org
http://ochaonline.un.org/ochaunep

Conserve the environment! Please do not print this email unless absolutely
necessary.

2010 Hazard mapping and environmental summit (HMES)
[ Eco Summit 2010 ]

Type: Meeting or Conference 
Date: 08-15 Apr 2010 
Location: Philippines (Manila) 
Main organizer 
Resource Recovery Movement (RRM) 

Description 

The Resource Recovery Movement will hold the first 2010 Hazards Mapping and Environment Summit  (Eco 2010 Summit) in Manila, Philippines. This is ultimately borne about by the tremendous changing of the Philippine landscape and those of other countries in the Pacific Rim in the last few decades. All efforts towards risk mapping in relation to calamities and disasters in the past should now take into consideration the great shifts and transformations in land mass, the enormous amount of rainfall brought about by climate change and many new factors that were heretofore not factored into national and sub-national planning by governments as well as even by business establishments and non-government organizations.

The 2010 Hazard Mapping and Environmental Summit (HMES) is intended to develop better approaches to mapping risks and dangers to communities in the Philippines and other countries with tropical climates. It takes a cue from the recent experience in China, Indonesia and the Philippines, notwithstanding the previous experiences in Thailand, Bangladesh, Pakistan where scores of people died due to unforeseen occurrences during the incidence of a natural disaster: earthquake, 
typhoon, tsunami and other calamities. 

The databasing, mapping and full coordination of efforts towards use and sharing of a full function GIS on hazards, volcanoes, water, flood, forests in the Philippines and Asia, vulnerability areas, liquefaction potential, crisis and hot spots is long due because of the long-running phenomenon of climate change in the planet. This is also significant in that the Philippines, among other countries, lies in the Pacific Rim of Fire where a large number of earthquake faults lie. 

The most important value of the conference is to determine the plan and the cost of implementing such a plan to make the Philippines and other participating nations safer from increasingly hazardous calamities. 

Additional information 
http://ecologyguardian.wordpress.com/ 

How to register 
Please contact Sol: +632 7102609 +639212384228 
email: saferecover@msn.com 
onefestival@live.com 

 

ANNUAL ECOLOGY CRISIS CONFERENCE

The Resource Recovery Movement will hold the first 2010 Hazards Mapping and Environment Summit (Eco 2010 Summit) in Manila, Philippines.

This is ultimately borne about by the tremendous changing of the Philippine landscape and those of other countries in the Pacific Rim in the last few decades.

All efforts towards risk mapping in relation to calamities and disasters in the past should now take into consideration the great shifts and transformations in land mass, the enormous amount of rainfall brought about by Climate Change and many new factors that were heretofore not factored into national and sub-national planning by governments as well as even by business establishments and non-government organizations.

Click this link to sign up: Join Resource Recovery Movement!

The 2010 Hazard Mapping and Environmental Summit (HMES) is intended to develop better approaches to mapping risks and dangers to communities in the Philippines and other countries with tropical climates.

It takes a cue from the recent experience in China, Indonesia and the Philippines, notwithstanding the previous experiences in Thailand, Bangladesh, Pakistan where scores of people died due to unforeseen occurrences during the incidence of a natural disaster: earthquake, typhoon, tsunami and other calamities.

The databasing, mapping and full coordination of efforts towards use and sharing of a full function GIS on hazards, volcanoes, water, flood, forests in the Philippines and Asia, vulnerability areas, liquefaction potential, crisis and hot spots is long due because of the long-running phenomenon of Climate Change in the planet. This is also significant in that the Philippines, among other countries, lies in the Pacific Rim of Fire where a large number of earthquake faults lie.

The most important value of the conference is to determine the plan and the cost of implementing such a plan to make the Philippines and other participating nations safer from increasingly hazardous calamities.

Note: The organizers reserve the right to make minor changes in the Conference details prior to the actual Event.

HMES 2010 Organizers