PAG-ASA: WARMER WEATHER THIS WEEK

'BASYANG' LEAVES. The country will have warm weather in the next three to five days due to the easterly wind coming from the Pacific Ocean, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) reported yesterday. Good weather is expected in most parts of the country this week, save for isolated passing rains in the Visayas. PAGASA weather division chief Robert Sawi said no tropical cyclone formation is expected in the next five days. “We expect the wind coming from the Pacific Ocean to bring warmer temperatures in the coming days,” Sawi told The STAR. The weather bureau said the northeast monsoon would continue to affect the extreme Northern Luzon in the next 24 hours. The regions of Ilocos, Cordillera and Cagayan Valley will have partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated light rains.

ALSO: Lawmakers endorse medical marijuana

The House minority bloc is pushing for the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes. Minority leader Ronaldo Zamora said they would join minority colleague Rep. Rodolfo Albano III of Isabela in advocating and promoting medical marijuana. “We are in agreement that marijuana for medicinal, strictly medicinal, purposes should be examined and legitimized. For recreational purposes, that’s an entirely different issue,” he said. Albano is drafting a bill that would allow the use of marijuana by patients suffering from epilepsy and similar conditions. He said members of the Philippine Moms for Medical Marijuana have asked him to champion their cause in Congress. “I am seeking medical marijuana for certain patients only. If all else failed, why don’t we allow them to try it?” he said. He said many states in America are now allowing medical marijuana. “Research has so advanced that certain patients with brain-related ailments are responding positively to it,” he added.

ALSO:  Baguio, Dagupan, Tacloban most at risk to climate change – study

CLARK FREEPORT, Pampanga , Philippines – Baguio, Dagupan and Tacloban have been ranked as the most vulnerable cities to the effects of climate change, according to a study released recently by the World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF) and Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) Foundation. The latest study of the WWF and BPI ranked 12 major cities in the country. Baguio obtained a score of 7.43 while Dagupan got 6.91 and Tacloban 6.74. The other cities found vulnerable to climate change were Iloilo, 6.69; Cagayan de Oro, 6.68; Cebu, 6.65; Zamboanga, 6.32; Naga, 6.10; Laoag, 5.80; Davao, 5.6; Batangas, 5.65, and Angeles, 5.56. Tacloban’s ranking came two months before Super Typhoon Yolanda devastated the city last November.

ALSO: Laguna’s 7 Crater Lakes proclaimed world’s most threatened

The Philippines’ Seven Crater Lakes in San Pablo City, Laguna have been chosen as the “Threatened Lakes of the Year 2014” by the Germany-based environmental group Global Nature Fund (GNF). In commemoration of World Wetlands Day, the GNF drew attention to the advancing destruction of the seven crater lakes, named Sampaloc, Bunot, Mojicap, Pandin, Palakpakin, Yambo and Kalibato. The GNF and the Friends of the Seven Lakes Foundation (FSLF) are seeking sustainable measures to protect the lakes and improve the quality of their water. For over 30 years, the Seven Crater Lakes were used for recreational activities by local residents. However, years of neglect have led to their deterioration. In the 1990s, illegal constructions sprouted along the lakeshore while fish cages mushroomed on the lakes, covering as much as 70 percent of the surface area. 2012 satellite images showed that fish cages still occupy more than 40 percent of the surface area, compared to the allowable 10 percent. A supposed moratorium on the renovation of existing fish cages and establishment of new cages has not been enforced.


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Pagasa: Warmer weather this week

MANILA, FEBRUARY 3, 2014 (PHILSTAR) By Helen Flores - The country will have warm weather in the next three to five days due to the easterly wind coming from the Pacific Ocean, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) reported yesterday.

Good weather is expected in most parts of the country this week, save for isolated passing rains in the Visayas.

PAGASA weather division chief Robert Sawi said no tropical cyclone formation is expected in the next five days.

“We expect the wind coming from the Pacific Ocean to bring warmer temperatures in the coming days,” Sawi told The STAR.

The weather bureau said the northeast monsoon would continue to affect the extreme Northern Luzon in the next 24 hours.

The regions of Ilocos, Cordillera and Cagayan Valley will have partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated light rains.

Metro Manila and the rest of the country will be partly cloudy to cloudy with isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms.

Basyang leaves 3 dead

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) said Tropical Depression Basyang left at least three people dead and displaced 1,130 families or 5,646 individuals after hitting parts of the Visayas and Mindanao.

Jose Haji Babatid, 22, of Balamban town, died of electrocution while Danny Tundag, 24, of Daanbantayan, both in Cebu, drowned when a motorized boat capsized in Camotes Island on Friday.

Dionesio Paler, 66, also died of drowning in Maasin City, Southern Leyte. – With Alexis Romero

Lawmakers endorse medical marijuana By Jess Diaz (The Philippine Star) | Updated February 3, 2014 - 12:00am 2 32 googleplus0 0

MANILA, Philippines - The House minority bloc is pushing for the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes.

Minority leader Ronaldo Zamora said they would join minority colleague Rep. Rodolfo Albano III of Isabela in advocating and promoting medical marijuana.

“We are in agreement that marijuana for medicinal, strictly medicinal, purposes should be examined and legitimized. For recreational purposes, that’s an entirely different issue,” he said.

Albano is drafting a bill that would allow the use of marijuana by patients suffering from epilepsy and similar conditions.

He said members of the Philippine Moms for Medical Marijuana have asked him to champion their cause in Congress.

“I am seeking medical marijuana for certain patients only. If all else failed, why don’t we allow them to try it?” he said.

He said many states in America are now allowing medical marijuana.

“Research has so advanced that certain patients with brain-related ailments are responding positively to it,” he added.

Albano said one doctor-researcher who has changed his mind on medical marijuana and who has produced a documentary on it is Sanjay Gupta, chief medical correspondent of American cable television giant CNN.

In an article posted on the CNN website, Gupta, a brain surgeon, apologized to the American people for opposing medical marijuana.

“I apologize because I didn’t look hard enough, until now. I didn’t look far enough. I didn’t review papers from smaller labs in other countries doing some remarkable research, and I was too dismissive of the loud chorus of legitimate patients whose symptoms improved on cannabis (marijuana),” he said.

He said in some patients, “marijuana is the only thing that works.”

“Take the case of Charlotte Figi, who I met in Colorado. She started having seizures soon after birth. By age 3, she was having 300 a week, despite being on seven different medications. Medical marijuana has calmed her brain, limiting her seizures to two or three per month,” he said.

“I have seen more patients like Charlotte first hand, spent time with them and come to the realization that it is irresponsible not to provide the best care we can as a medical community, care that could involve marijuana. We have been terribly and systematically misled for nearly 70 years in the United States, and I apologize for my own role in that,” he wrote.

Gupta said in Spain and Israel, marijuana is now being researched as a possible cancer cure, while in the United States, citizens in 20 states and the District of Columbia have now voted to approve marijuana for medical applications, and more states will be making that choice soon.

He promised to do his part to help, genuinely and honestly, fill the remaining void in our knowledge on medical marijuana.

In a recent interview, Donabella Cunanan, a member of the Philippine Moms for Medical Marijuana who has an epileptic child, urged lawmakers to consider allowing the use of marijuana for medical purposes.

Baguio, Dagupan, Tacloban most at risk to climate change – study By Ding Cervantes (The Philippine Star) | Updated February 3, 2014 - 12:00am

CLARK FREEPORT, Pampanga , Philippines – Baguio, Dagupan and Tacloban have been ranked as the most vulnerable cities to the effects of climate change, according to a study released recently by the World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF) and Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) Foundation.

The latest study of the WWF and BPI ranked 12 major cities in the country.

Baguio obtained a score of 7.43 while Dagupan got 6.91 and Tacloban 6.74.

The other cities found vulnerable to climate change were Iloilo, 6.69; Cagayan de Oro, 6.68; Cebu, 6.65; Zamboanga, 6.32; Naga, 6.10; Laoag, 5.80; Davao, 5.6; Batangas, 5.65, and Angeles, 5.56.

Tacloban’s ranking came two months before Super Typhoon Yolanda devastated the city last November.

In presenting the results of Phase 3 of their study, WWF-Philippines vice chair and chief executive officer Jose Ma. Lorenzo Tan said they aim to help Philippine cities prepare for the impacts of climate change.

“We are not scaring you. You know reality. We just want to help you to adapt and be sustainable,” Tan said, citing the importance of telling the people the risks they face from climate change, regardless of whether this would trigger antagonism from the business sector in their communities.

BPI executive Florendo Maranan said findings of the study were initially meant to be confidential and intended only for the business interests of his bank.

“But initial results convinced us that the communities would be interested in the findings,” he said.

The cities were ranked according to “climate exposure, socio-economic sensitivity and adaptive capacity melded to generate scores which show each city’s climate vulnerability,” Tan said.

Laguna’s 7 Crater Lakes proclaimed world’s most threatened (The Philippine Star) | Updated February 3, 2014 - 12:00am 2 7 googleplus0 0


Photo from en.wikipedia.org

MANILA, Philippines - The Philippines’ Seven Crater Lakes in San Pablo City, Laguna have been chosen as the “Threatened Lakes of the Year 2014” by the Germany-based environmental group Global Nature Fund (GNF).

In commemoration of World Wetlands Day, the GNF drew attention to the advancing destruction of the seven crater lakes, named Sampaloc, Bunot, Mojicap, Pandin, Palakpakin, Yambo and Kalibato.

The GNF and the Friends of the Seven Lakes Foundation (FSLF) are seeking sustainable measures to protect the lakes and improve the quality of their water.

For over 30 years, the Seven Crater Lakes were used for recreational activities by local residents.

However, years of neglect have led to their deterioration.

In the 1990s, illegal constructions sprouted along the lakeshore while fish cages mushroomed on the lakes, covering as much as 70 percent of the surface area.

2012 satellite images showed that fish cages still occupy more than 40 percent of the surface area, compared to the allowable 10 percent.

A supposed moratorium on the renovation of existing fish cages and establishment of new cages has not been enforced.

Bobby Azores, chairman of the FSLF, said the growing number of fish cages exacerbates the degradation of the lakes to the point of killing aquatic life.

“This is evidenced by occasional fish kills and the massive growth of green algae as a result of the high pollution levels of the lake,” Azores said.

“Freshwater bodies like ponds and lakes, especially a small lake like Lake Sampaloc, are considered to be ‘stagnant water’ and have little ability to cleanse themselves, unlike oceans or seas,” he added.

Collective effort

Since 2000, the FSLF, along with other environmental organizations, has been striving to make Lake Sampaloc a pilot showcase of lake rehabilitation.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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