Bacolod: Crop drought damage in Negros Occidental grows to P115M

photo courtesy of The Visayan Daily Star

Bacolod City – The damage to crops brought about by the El Niño drought in Negros Occidental has further increased to P115,228,510, affecting 3,312 farmers, according to reports of the Office of Provincial Agriculture.

In her report to Negros Occidental Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson, Provincial Agriculturist Dina Gensola, disclosed that 2,737 hectares of crops, including rice and corn, in 153 barangays of 22 towns and cities of Negros Occidental have been affected by the drought.

Water rationing was also reported in some barangays in the cities of Bacolod, Himamaylan, San Carlos, and municipalities of San Enrique and Hinobaan.

The town of San Enrique is now under a state of calamity, while the city government of Himamaylan has already allocated P23 million from its savings in 2023 to help drought-affected farmers and residents.

Mayor Rogelio Raymund Tongson reported that about 13 barangays in Himamaylan are now experiencing water shortage, including Nabali-an, Mambagaton, Su-ay, Malang, To-oy, San Antonio, Buenavista, Cabanbanan, Libacao, Cabadiangan, and Carabalan.

Mayor Renato Gustilo also reported ongoing water rationing at Sipaway Island, a prime tourist destination in San Carlos City, which has about 4,000 residents.

Gustilo said they are sourcing water from the San Carlos City mainland, through an underwater pipe going to Sipaway island.

After determining the extent of drought damage, Gustilo said they will decide next week whether or not they will declare a state of calamity. (Gilbert Bayoran via The Visayan Daily Star)

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