NegOr posts over P1.6B in agri losses due to El Niño 

Damage to crops like rice and corn as well as other agricultural losses in Negros Oriental due to the El Niño phenomenon has now reached more than P1.6 billion, an official said Wednesday, May 15. 

Provincial Agriculture Office (PAO) chief Emmanuel Caduyac said  the latest data available  showed that the amount represents some 9,560 metric tons of production loss in volume. 

It is expected to increase as other local government units have yet to consolidate their figures. 

“The numbers are still expected to rise as some local government units (LGUs) in the province still have to consolidate and update their losses and damage, but regardless, we are now deploying farm equipment and adopting mitigating measures,” Caduyac said. 

Aside from rice and corn, high-value crops, livestock, and fisheries were also reported damaged by the drought. 

Roughly 4,900 hectares of agricultural land have been affected, with 1,410 hectares having no chance of recovery while the rest are partially damaged, he said. 

The province has started distributing tractors as a deed of donation to the different LGUs through the mayors and to farmers’ associations to assist in the recovery and/or rehabilitation of their agricultural lands amid the continuing drought triggered by the El Niño, Caduyac said. 

The tractors include 23 units of 50 horsepower worth  P32 million, and 30 units of 90 horsepower worth  P63 million taken from the provincial government’s supplemental funds, he added. 

More than 7,000 farmers and fisherfolk affected by the drought are also set to receive free rice of 25 kilos each to be purchased by the provincial government through its Quick Response Fund. 

No rice distribution date has been set yet as procurement is still ongoing. 

Caduyac said a budget of P20 million has been earmarked for this while the province is now in the final stages of acquiring four ramp pumps to assist in the irrigation of farmlands. 

Negros Oriental is now under a state of calamity due to the El Niño, with local state weather bureau authorities saying that the drought is projected to extend until June.*PNA 

Secured By miniOrangeSecured By miniOrange