Bacolod: Kanlaon eruption causes P9.9M crop damage

photo courtesy of The Visayan Daily Star

Bacolod City – The phreatic explosion of Kanlaon volcano in central Negros has initially resulted in around P9.9 million in crop damage, as of June 6, according to reports of the Negros Occidental Office of the Provincial Agriculturist.

Damaged by the ashfall were high value commercial crops, valued at P8,501,350, rice fields at P1,368,956.35, and P122,250 for corn.

Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson admitted that the lack of drinking water in areas of La Castellana and La Carlota is now a major concern, as rivers and streams have been contaminated by lahar.

The provincial government of Negros Occidental and different local government units, as well as national agencies, among others, have set up mobile portable water stations in LGUs to address the needs of affected residents.

The Provincial Veterinarian Office has not monitored any deaths of livestock, but it reported that 275 free range chickens, four goats, and two pigs in Bago City, Negros Occidental, experienced respiratory problems due to the ashfall and sulphuric odors.

Mayor Alme Rhummyla Nicor Mangilimutan also issued an executive, enforcing a curfew from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m., which took effect June 7, aimed at regulating public and non-essential activities in La Castellana, which is now under a state of calamity, to ensure the safety of its residents.

Government workers who are on duty, medical doctors and health personnel, as well as veterinarians, workers of public utility companies conducting construction and maintenance or emergency activities, are exempted from the curfew.

Mayor Jose Chubasco Cardenas also reported that the livelihood of about 1,600 vegetable farmers in Canlaon City, Negros Oriental, were also affected by the ash fall that destroyed their crops.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) reported that 682 families, composed of 2,479 individuals in Negros Occidental and Negros Oriental were affected by the phreatic explosion of Kanlaon volcano.

Of the affected residents, a total of 361 families, or 1,400 persons, are now staying in eight evacuation centers, while 62 families, composed of 364 individuals, are not in evacuation centers.

On the other hand, 64 families, composed of 256 individuals, are set to return to their respective homes in barangays of Haguimit, Ara-al and Yubo, in La Carlota City, Mayor Rex Jalando-on disclosed.

Alert level 2 remains in effect at Kanlaon volcano, as of this time. (Gilbert Bayoran via The Visayan Daily Star)

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