Climate change and water: impacts and vulnerabilities in the Philippines

Publication - December 21, 2009
Climate change is undoubtedly the biggest challenge the Philippines faces today, and the vulnerability of our water resources to this phenomenon is a reality that can no longer be ignored. But while water scarcity is perhaps one of the most alarming projected effects of climate change on water resources, two recent typhoons in the Philippines—Ketsana and Parma—have driven home the message that over-abundance can be equally devastating. Both typhoons, along with several others in the past few years, have shown how the country is sorely ill-prepared to handle the impacts brought on by a warming world. Indeed, climate change and the ensuing extreme weather events which have brought too little—or too much—water, have caused periods of water crisis that have destroyed thousands of lives and billions of pesos worth of property and agricultural crops.