Manila, Philippines—July 24, 2020— Honda Philippines Inc. (HPI), the No. 1 motorcycle manufacturer and distributor of Honda’s power product in the Philippines, recently donated Honda power products to help restore and maintain the Japanese Garden at the Rizal Park, Manila.
The Japanese Garden is found in the middle of the Rizal Park (Luneta Park), built to promote the friendship between Japan and the Philippines. Known for its lagoon and a bridge, the Japanese Garden brings serenity and beauty to the bustling city of Manila.
Coinciding with the Philippines-Japan Friendship Day, Honda donated a Honda WX10T and a WL30XH water pumps, which will be useful in cultivating and preserving the garden.
“Through this initiative, Honda aims to show our support in maintaining the Japanese Garden, which is not only a national attraction but also one of the symbols that represent the ties between the Philippines and Japan,” Mr. Susumu Mitsuishi, HPI President said.
The donation is also part of HPI’s thrust of serving people worldwide with the “joy of expanding their life’s potential” through Honda Power Tools like the WX10T and
WL30XH pumps—both models will help the Japanese Garden caretakers in doing their daily tasks to maintain the area.
The Honda WL30XH has high power output and superb fuel economy for maximum pump performance and a carburetor that can be removed and reinstalled while the frame is attached.
The Honda WX10, on the other hand, is lightweight, compact, and easy to use with a durable Honda GX series commercial grade engine for easy starting and provides ample power for the toughest conditions.
To know more, please follow Honda Philippines, Inc.’s Facebook page, and Instagram account at @hondaph_mc, or check their official website: https://www.hondaph.com/.
Social science policies needed to address impact of COVID-19 – DOST Chief
“In the policy-making, I believe that everything boils down to the basic principles that is inundated by the decision-makers, and the rest shall be threshed out, as mentioned, as utilizing science and we’d just remind everybody that when we say science-based, it is not only the mathematical sciences or the physical sciences that we are talking about, but science that includes the social science aspects,” Secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) said, during the webinar presentation of the study on “Content Analysis of Government Policies and Issuances regarding the 2020 Pandemic.”
Sec. de la Peña added that policy can change because of the changing environment. Although decision makers would sometimes stick to one policy that they have already announced, it is not bad to change a policy if it is really necessary.
The content analysis of government policies is a research project that entails a comprehensive desk review of government orders, policies, issuances and/or legal instrumentalities pertaining to the prevention and control of COVID-19 in the Philippines. The study was conducted by Laufred I. Hernandez, Professor of the Department of Behavioral Sciences of the University of the Philippines Manila,
Since January until July this year, 55 resolutions on policy directions were issued by the Interagency Task Force (IATF) on Emerging Infectious Diseases (EID), 78 policy guidelines were issued by the Department of Health and more than 100 local government ordinances issued.
Hernandez believes that the most important policy should emanate from the local government units because each local government has their own way by which to mitigate the COVID-19.
One of the objectives of the research is to review policy issuances relative to timeliness, adequacy, practical feasibility and reach.
The research finds that “the Philippines’ approach in combating COVID-19 has been very reactive and more in population control rather than giving emphasis to go testing in order to locate and isolate the virus from spreading further.”
Hernandez, in his study, finds that RA 11469 or the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act’s initial implementation steps show that people, contrary to what the word ‘bayanihan’ as ‘bayan’ implies, are still left out in the fight against the virus. Largely, the people are mere recipients of the aid package.
De la Peña lauded the National Research Council of the Philippines (NRCP) of the DOST for taking the lead in COVID-related social researches. He emphasized that social science is valuable, especially at a time like this when people’s feedback and people’s perception and situations are needed to be looked into.
And this is what the Council’s researches have been doing — letting the people know what and how the people are feeling. DOST-NRCP’s researches on COVID have been particularly relevant especially in the decision-making process.
The value of these researches was seen by a member of the IATF when they requested for a presentation of another DOST-NRCP funded research on the “Feelings, Cognitions, Behaviors of Filipinos During the COVID-19 Pandemic,” which was conducted by Dr. Cecilla Gastardo-Conaco, Department of Psychology, UP Diliman. The study investigated the people’s feelings and responses to COVID-19 pandemic across the timeline of the pandemic and through the various government actions.
“With so many legislations being passed, we need NRCP’s analysis to see their relevance, timeliness and the necessity of those pieces or actions,” De la Peña said.
The webinar is the third in the series of the Kapakanan ng Tao sa Oras ng Pandemya-COVID (KTOP-COVID) conducted by DOST-NRCP. The Council has been putting a face and providing a voice on an otherwise purely numerical COVID-related data. The social studies researches being done and presented are providing valuable information in understanding the overall COVID situation in the country.
The KTOP-COVID runs from June 23, 2020 to August 2020 at 10:00 – 11:00 in the morning. The public can view the webinars in the Research Pod, a Facebook Page of DOST-NRCP.
The next two remaining research projects to be presented in the series are: Scoping on Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Services (MHPSS) in the Philippines in the time of COVID 19 Pandemic by Dr. Elizabeth P. de Castro – Professor (retired) Department of Psychology, UP on 04 August 2020; and Defining a Gender-responsive Work-from-Home (WFH) Scheme in a Post-ECQ Scenario by Dr. Marieta Banez-Sumagaysay – Executive Director, DOST-NRCP on 18 August 2020. (S&T Media Service, Geraldine Bulaon-Ducusin)
5) DOST reports innovations and facilities improvement for DRR-CCAM through PAGASA and PHIVOLCS
During the Pre-SONA forum on 22 July 2020, DOST reported Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI) solutions from its two agencies involved with DRR-CCAM, namely PAGASA and PHIVOLCS.
In the case of PAGASA, improvement of S&T facilities are reflected in the following gains since the beginning of 2019:
• Increase in the number of Doppler Radars from 16 to 17;
• Increase in the number of High Frequency Doppler Radars for sea waves monitoring from 12 to 24;
• Increase in the number of Flood Forecasting and Warning System facilities from 8 to 13 with 5 more forthcoming
PAGASA’S team of researchers also developed a new method to predict the likelihood of tropical cyclone occurrence one or two weeks in advance. The method provides information on the possible occurrence of a tropical cyclone and its path and trajectory 5-16 days in advance. It is now being used and tested by PAGASA’s weather forecasters. Initial observations reveal that the new method performs with considerable accuracy.
At PHIVOLCS on the other hand, the Philippine Seismic Network which monitor earthquakes had an increase in the number of seismic stations from 98 in 2017 to 104 in 2020. These stations are important in monitoring small earthquakes with magnitude less than three which is essential in predicting sites of bigger and damaging earthquakes.
To address the lack of systematized information for an effective climate and disaster risk assessment, DOST has supported the PHIVOLCS and led the multi-agency Geospatial Information Management and Analysis Project for Hazards and Risk Assessment in the Philippines (or GeoRiskPH).
The GeoRiskPH is a risk assessment tool that systematizes hazards and exposure data from various sources into one platform and provides essential tools for disaster risk management. The most publicly-accessed tool of the GeoRiskPH Platform is the web-based HazardHunterPH application. It generates, in a few clicks, accurate hazard assessment report for seismic, volcanic, and hydrometeorological hazards. The HazardHunterPH has provided property owners, buyers, land developers, and planners real-time and free-of-charge hazard assessment reports. Another platform is the GeoAnalyticsPH, which can generate maps and analytics to maximize smart and efficient decision-making and policy-making. This application could be used in the smart implementation of infrastructure projects under the “Build, Build, Build” Program.
6) DOST to help market products of farmers and fisherfolks in Region 02
DOST 02 entered into a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with the Department of Agriculture – Regional Field Office 02 (DA-FRO 02) to allow farmers and fisherfolks who are enrolled to the KADIWA ni Ani at Kita Program and other DA-RFO 02 stakeholders to use the oneSTore e-commerce platform in marketing and delivering major agricultural goods. As part of the agreement, DOST 02 trained selected DA-RFO 02 employees and provided the latter with login credentials so they can manage their account in oneSTore. To date, a total of 16 agricultural products (vegetables, fruits, fishes, other seafood products, and processed foods) were already uploaded in oneSTore. Currently, a Self-Enabled Delivery Service (SEDS) system is being employed because of the non-operation of some courier companies and the restriction on mobility due to the COVID-19 pandemic. KADIWA members have already received several orders from oneSTore users. MOAs between DOST and DA in the other regions of the country on the use of DOST’s oneSTore e-commerce platform by DA’s KADIWA is expected to follow.
7) DOST-Region 03 deployed 24 units of village-type rice mills to elected farmers’ groups under its Community Empowerment thru Science and Technology (CEST) Program
DOST-Region 03 awarded 24 marginalized farmers’ communities (cooperatives and associations) with Compact Impeller Brown Rice Mills to allow their farmer members to mill their own rice harvest and no longer depend on commercial millers , which are usually located in the urban centers. Using this type of technology, farmers are also able to achieve higher rice recovery because of the unpolished rice produced using these millers. The technology also gives ready access to more nutritious brown rice in areas where malnutrition is a problem.
8) DOST-PCAARRD approves a MIMAROPA-wide Seaweeds Program
DOST-PCAARRD approved a new project entitled Pangtawid Program for Coastal Communities in Palawan Affected by the Luzon Lockdown through Seaweed Farming to be implemented by the Palawan State University (PSU). In Palawan, seaweed production comprises 99% of the total yield in the MIMAROPA Region, which accounts for 27 % of the entire production of the country. Seaweeds and its derivatives (e.g. carrageenan) are export commodities and are therefore largely affected by the disruption in global market and supply chain due to the COVID 19 pandemic. During the entire ECQ, seaweed farmers had suffered the economic consequence as demand for raw material decreased and the prices have fallen. The lifting of ECQ in Palawan starting May 1, 2020 calls for an intervention to support seaweed farmers in coping with the economic crisis. Providing assistance to seaweed farmers will also help in efforts towards food security in the country.
This project will utilize the laboratory-reared cultivars from the completed DOST-funded project at PSU. This is the use of Branch and Spore Culture Technologies to Enhance Seaweed Production in Farms. The cultivars are being propagated in established seaweed nurseries of PSU in San Vicente, Quezon, and Bataraza, Palawan. Selected fast-growing cultivars from these nurseries will be dispersed to the target beneficiaries of the project as initial stock for culture in order to augment their livelihood and subsequently increase their income. The project will establish three (3) hectares of sea-based seaweed nurseries using pre-selected fast-growing cultivars in the municipalities of Narra, San Vicente, and Bataraza, Palawan. At least 100 seaweed farm families will benefit from the project and will be trained