Minimizing Social Risks in Flood Prone Urban Areas

Minimizing Social Risks in Flood Prone Urban Areas: A Review of the Urban Planning and Environmental Management Practice, Process and Metholodogies in the Philippines

Lorna S. Manila

Flooding in the last couple of years has increased in frequency, intensity and coverage not to mention the damage that its caused to lives and property, dislocation of people and disruption of economic activities. This phenomenon is clearly apparent worldwide and the Philippines is not spared. Most parts of Luzon, Metro Manila and Mindanao have are heavily flooded several times in a year and just recently, the cities Cagayan de Oro in Northern Mindanao Region and Dumaguete City in Central Visayas Region, places which have hosted our Forum Network were badly hit by massive floods. These cities have just recently shown a steady rise in economic activities but the recent flood may hamper its development. Although there are planning guidelines available and city governments prepare Comprehensive Development and Land Use Plans, flood risk assessment and management may or may not be integrated into these plans, if it is integrated, problems in implementation and monitoring of these plans maybe happening in these cities.
This paper would like to review the urban planning and environmental management practices, processes and methodologies in the Philippines, particularly in the city of Dumaguete and its neighboring municipalities in view of the negative impact of the recent floods that occurred in certain parts of the city, and in order to have a better understanding of the real causes and risks of flooding, how failure in the planning and management process maybe avoided and to determine the appropriate strategies/methodologies that would best address the disaster before it occurs and minimizing its negative impact.

Lorna S. Manila
National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA)
Regional Office No. 7 Sudlon, Lahug, Cebu City 6000