MANILA, Philippines (May 28, 2014) — As part of the Manila city government’s disaster preparedness initiatives, the disaster risk reduction and management team of the Manila city government has partnered with MovePH to better prepare and respond to disasters through Project Agos.
Project Agos is an information and communications platform that combines top down government action with bottom up citizen involvement to help communities adapt to climate change, and become better prepared for disaster mitigation, response, and recovery. It is operated by MovePH, Rappler’s civic engagement arm.
“Manila is prepared. Since January, the city government has been meeting to discuss measures so we can be way ahead when it comes to disasters,” Manilla DRRM office head Johnny Uy said during the signing of the memorandum of agreement (MOU).
Uy signed the MOU on behalf of Manila while MovePH coordinator and multimedia reporter Voltaire Tupaz represented Rappler.
According to Uy, Manila is preparing for different disaster hazards including catastrophic flooding, tsunami, storm surge, and earthquake. Uy added that projections show that almost half of Manila is vulnerable to inundation in case of a storm surge.
An Asian Development Bank report also revealed that the Philippines is among Southeast Asian countries most vulnerable to coastal and inland flooding.
Manila is particulalry identified as the second urban area in the world with the most people potentially affected by disasters based on a report by the risk insurance Swiss Re Group.
Operated by MovePH, Project Agos will help the country’s capital in harnessing technology to maximize the flow of critical data before, during, and after a disaster. The partnership aims to educate and empower the public to take direct action that will save lives and property.
The project has 3 components that aim to use technology to disseminate critical information. Each part includes the following features found in the Project Agos microsite:
- PREPARE - Weather alerts, climate change and disaster stories, practical tips, case studies on best practices, hazard and risk maps
- RESPOND - Disaster Information Map (reports of public infrastructure damage, flood, rescue needs, relief needs); partners are given access to running list of incidents
- RECOVER - Stories of resiliency and recovery and best practices
State-of-the-art command center
Project Agos will be integrated into city’s DRRM efforts, including its state-of-the-art Emergency Response Assistance Program (ERAP). The modern facility – which serves as the city’s response command center – was launched in April.
The center boasts of more than 70 computers connected to all the CCTV cameras installed in various parts of the city. The Manila DRRM team also acquired a monitoring device that enables audio and visual communication interface between on-site and off-site responders. - Rappler.com