Reporting Project NOAH’s Contribution to Effective Disaster Response
CHEERS TO Rappler for a piece enumerating contributions of Project NOAH (Nationwide Operational Assessment of Hazards) in disaster management in light of the recent news of its impending closure of due to lack of funding.
Rappler’s “How does Project NOAH contribute to PH’s disaster management?” recounted the important assistance the program has given to aid Filipinos in time of disaster: creating barangay-level hazard maps, providing timely advisories on storm surge, and near real-time weather situation. It also includes the mobile app Arko which issues up to minute updates and WebSAFE which serves as an impact-assessment tool.
Project NOAH is the Department of Science and Technology’s (DOST) flagship disaster prevention and mitigation program. It was established in 2012.
Rappler’s piece draws attention to the importance of technological advancement in disaster assessment as this helps all disaster agencies to respond effectively. In a disaster-prone country, Project NOAH has also helped to popularize disaster issues and initiatives, raising levels of public awareness.
On January 29, media reported on Project NOAH ending in February 28 due to lack of funds as announced by Executive Director Mahar Lagmay through a radio interview. In an official statement on January 30, the DOST announced that the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) the state weather bureau will take over the operations of the program.
The Rappler report issued a timely reminder about what could be lost with the termination of the program. Media should check how well the transition or transfer of activities to Pagsa will serve disaster needs.