MANILA — Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana has called for more volunteers who could help raise public awareness on disaster risk reduction and management (DRRM) and implement measures that would check climate change.
During the 19th Gawad Kalasag National Awarding Ceremony held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Ortigas Center, Pasig City late Monday, Lorenzana said these volunteers are needed by the Department of National Defense (DND), Office of Civil Defense (OCD) and National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).
Citing a study of the Philippine Institute for Development Studies, he said 60 percent of the country’s land mass is exposed to multiple hazards, and as a result, 74 percent of the population is rendered vulnerable.
“The Philippines also ranked 8th among the Southeast Asian nations that have the highest multiple climate hazard index,” the defense chief said. “We need people like our honorees who lead the way in championing disaster risk reduction as a core element of climate change adaption.”
About 58 individuals and groups were feted for their DRRM and humanitarian contributions.
“As inhabitants of a disaster-prone country, we know too well the negative impact of natural catastrophes, like super typhoons, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions. We know too well that we cannot afford to be complacent, and that we should be ready all the time,” he added. (PNA)