Training on the Use of GeoRiskPH Platforms and MOA Signing with DOST-PHIVOLCS on the Implementation of GeoRiskPH for the Province of Zamboanga del Sur
March 8, 2023
by: Elynrae Soriano
DOST-PHIVOLCS conducted a back-to-back event last March 8 and 9 at the Chandler Suites in Pagadian City which featured a learning activity on the use of the GeoRiskPH platforms and a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) signing on the implementation of GeoRiskPH for the province of Zamboanga Del Sur. Forty-six (46) participants from provincial office, Aurora, Bayog, Ramon Magsaysay, San Miguel, and Pagadian City & six technical personnel from DOST-PHIVOLCS, attended the course specifically designed to assist Local Government Units (LGUs) and National Government Agencies (NGAs) to effectively understand and use GeoMapperPH in building their exposure geodatabase and other GeoRiskPH platforms as tools for a more efficient hazard and risk assessment, data collection, data sharing, and analysis in support of data-informed planning and decision-making. Hon. Victor J. Yu, Provincial Governor of Zamboanga Del Sur and Mr. Demetrio Luis E. Dalid, Officer-in-Charge of PPDO-ZDS graced the event with their presence to show support for this initiative. They were also joined by Dr. Teresito C. Bacolcol, DOST-PHIVOLCS Director, via Zoom, to formally welcome the participants. In his speech, Dir. Bacolcol encouraged the workshop attendees “to be brave and take innovative solutions”. He also urged them to be proactive in disaster response because he believes that even though natural disasters are inevitable, there is something that can be done. One way of doing so is by attending a training program like this one. The capacity-building event highlighted orientations and hands-on exercises on the use of GeoMapperPH web and mobile applications for easier digitizing of building footprints and managing databases. It tacked as well discussions about the GeoRisk Philippines Initiative, HazardHunterPH, GeoAnalyticsPH, GeoRiskPH Web Services in QGIS, PlanSmartPH Ready to Rebuild Program, Evolution of the Filipino Homes, and Earthquake and Volcanic Hazards to provide more information on how to populate exposure database efficiently and to stress the importance of having a baseline data in their respective localities. A design thinking activity was also conducted where the participants commended numerous features of the applications like its layer filter and map printing capabilities. To further improve the platforms, they also proposed additional components such as pop-up description of codes and data on social infrastructures, commodities, and the like. Through this partnership, the municipalities and provincial office of Zamboanga Del Sur were given accounts in the GeoMapperPH and real-time database dashboards for hazard mapping and other LGU planning purposes. As a result, this urges the agency to further expand the reach of GeoRiskPH’s applications to more government institutions in the effort to achieve its ultimate goal of building a disaster-resilient Philippines.