Monday, February 13, 2012

Reaction on Earthquake in Cebu and Negros Oriental

IN LIGHT of the 6.9 magnitude earthquake disaster in Dumaguete and Cebu, as well as the flash flooding in Cagayan de Oro, Iligan and our own loss of 30 fellow townspeople in Matina Pangi, perhaps it would be helpful in directing environmental efforts to view two of the most critical geohazard areas in Davao City.

Many are not aware that the DENR-MGB has designated areas of Davao proper as moderate to highly landslide prone. For example, it published a geohazard map of Shrine Hills in the central city proper. I have taken the liberty of adding my own title and subdivision names along Shrines southern and eastern sides.

Please imagine, if you will, the effect on Shrine Hills area residents if a 6.9 magnitude temblor were to strike nearby, possibly on the reported fault line running along the western side of the hills along Diversion Road and above Orange Grove, Matina Pangi and other areas. The fault line has been pointed to in Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the Mines and Geosciences Bureau reports.

On the west side of Shrine Hill, much of the water that went to the Matina Pangi River would have come from run-off from built up subdivisions. It passed quickly to the next subdivision or to a stream down the line and into the Matina Pangi River. See MGB 2012 – Geohazard Mapping of Talomo and Matina Pangi Watersheds.

It seems especially critical not to further cement Shrine Hill which will increase flash flooding run off, nor to increase the hillside resident population at risk nor to add risk to residents below by building subdivisions above.

We, the People, and the City Council, will be judged not only for what we do but also for what we fail to do.

Stacey Baird
Environmental Watch Committee
Barangay Ma-a Federation of Homeowner Associations
Spring Village, Ma-a
Davao City

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