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DA, crop insurance company to start developing geographic insurance units

By Loraine D. Cerillo - Project Development Officer II
May 05, 2016

DA-Bureau of Soils and Water Management (BSWM) Director Silvino Tejada (Right) together with the Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC) Senior Vice President Norman Cajucom (Left) signed the Detailed Geographic Insurance Unit (GIU) Methodology which identifies the roles and responsibilities of the two institutions for the project implementation at the Lewis Grand Hotel in Clark, Pampanga on May 3, 2016. The development of Geographic Insurance Units (GIU) aims to identify basis of PCIC in grouping of farmers farm according to land limitation and climate hazard cause by drought and excessive rainfall.

This is coincided event to the Orientation Workshop on the Development of GIU for Weather Index Based Crop Insurance (WIBCI) Application that helps farmers and fisher folks by providing insurance package to farmers' vulnerable farms affected by natural calamities and disasters.

"BSWM appreciates the initiative of the PCIC Corporation for working hand in hand with us and considering the value of soils as a critical factor in the risk management and its role as natural capital for investment," Tejada said.

Through the GIU, every farm can be valued or assessed accordingly to its potentials and limitation through mapping schemes provided by the staff and personnel of the BSWM. Moreover, it will also serve as convergent point to harmonize all other efforts in climate change adaptation as it envisioned to group similar farms and farmers.

Farmers will be given site specific and appropriate intervention in terms of providing trainings and extension services and production inputs such as drought/flood tolerant seeds that they can use to enhance crop production.

Moreover, activities related to the project implementation will focus on site-specific soil characterization in relation to drainage, texture, and slope. It will also consider environmental factors such as elevation, occurrence of pests and diseases in the sites. Risks related to salt, drought and flood will also be identified.

At least 3.9 million will be allotted for the six-month project implementation in Peñablanca and Tuguegarao, pilot sites of the said program and expected to benefit at least 180 identified famer beneficiaries for the tied up project between BSWM and PCIC that will set off on first cropping season.

"Climate change somehow gave us the opportunity to innovate and come up with science based measures to adapt to climate change over the long term," Tejada underscored.

According to PCIC Insurance Specialist, Glaicel Alvarez, there were 150 farmer beneficiaries of Weather Index Based Crop insurance for the past three cycles or three cropping seasons from May 2011-Decemeber 2015. Furthermore, reports show that they have approved claims amounting to P202,500 for the rice farmers and P378,773.50 for corn farmers in Region II.

PCIC is known to provide insurance protection to the country’s agricultural producers particularly the subsistence farmers, against loss of their crops and/or non-crop agricultural assets on account of natural calamities such as typhoons, floods, droughts, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, plant pests and diseases, and/or other perils.

BSWM organized the said program as the focal agency for the enhancement of the delivery and effectiveness of climate information under the Philippine Climate Change Adaptation Project (PhilCCAP).

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