Climate Change and Disaster Risk Management News

Compilation of latest research news on climate change adaptation/management and disaster risk management

Volunteers for OSM Mapping Party help in Building Resilient UP Campuses

Makati City — Map the PhilippinesGrab, and OpenStreetMap (OSM) Philippines co-organized a mapping party in celebration of the OSM’s Geography Awareness Week at Grab PH’s headquarters in Makati last Saturday, November 25. It was attended by volunteers, students, government employees, non-government organization (NGO) workers, and some of the Grab personnel who significantly helped map the building footprints UP Campuses.

Geoweek Figure 1

Taking from the event’s description, students, map lovers, families and communities host events around the world to celebrate the importance of geography every November. The mapping party helped contribute to the mapping efforts of OpenStreetMap, the free and openly editable map of the world.

Geoweek Figure 2

Feye Andal, a UP NOAH researcher, gave an overview of UP NOAH and the UP Resilience Institute (UP RI) to the participants. She also introduced the UP mapping tasks that were used in the mapathon. Mapping UP campuses is a current capacity building activity of UP Resilience Institute as a part of its effort to help build resilient communities in the country..


The UP RI, with the UP NOAH Center as a core component, would like to thank Map the Philippines, Grab, and OpenStreetMap for organizing this activity.

UP NOAH and OpenStreetMap (OSM) for building Resilient UP Campuses

The UP Resilient Campuses Project by the UP Resilience Institute (UP RI), having the UP NOAH Center as a core component, aims to create disaster management contingency plans to address the UP campuses’ vulnerability to natural hazards. It intends to take off from previous and existing plans and improve them by using the latest technology and the best methodologies to develop better strategies specific to the higher education units of the University of the Philippines campuses. This new and improved plan will cover the entire scope disaster risk management, from the identification of the risks all the way to recovering from disasters. It also aims to develop strategies to become resilient against the adverse impacts of geological and climate related natural hazards. An important activity in this endeavor is the utilization of crowdsourced and collaborative mapping through the benefits of using OpenStreetMap data.


UP NOAH has long embraced public participation and open data to improve emergency response and disaster mitigation throughout the country. Through this crowdsourced method of generating geospatial data through the internet, we are a step closer to solving spatial problems with the help of satellite applications and mapping technology. This low cost innovation creates fast dissemination of specific geo-information onto the OSM base map. The collection of data is directed towards a smaller dedicated audience who are “on the ground” and are readily available to support rapid humanitarian mapping services.

Also, UP NOAH, OSM, and the UP community will be able to harness the geographical contributions of the volunteers through the WebSAFE tool of the NOAH website. End-users, especially the officials of local government units and members of civic groups, can better rely on the information translated to the website tools.  This data from thematic OSM mapping can be a solution to the heavily involved damage assessment and analysis activities before, during, and after large-scale emergencies.

Map Your Campus and Community with UP NOAH!

With your help, we will be able to create a community that may represent a breeding ground for diffusion of crowd-based mapping knowledge. This in turn will open opportunities in solving spatial planning, not only to the network of scientists and geographers but even to the public at large.

To help you get started, here is a YouTube video on how to use OpenStreetMap in 10-easy steps!

As a way to complement the expanding and existing content of the crowdsourced, free, and open-source mapping technology of OSM, UP NOAH conducts and joins mapping initiatives. This is in partnership with different organizations, institutions, agencies, and even student organizations who all share the same goals and objectives of having a disaster-resilient Philippines.

To those who already have their OSM accounts, you can contribute by using the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap (HOT) Tasking Manager, an online task manager for a collaborative and seamless mapping manager for OSM contributors.

HotOSM Screenshot


For more information, you can also access the OSM Learning Guide or e-mail the OpenStreetMap Philippines community at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and the UP NOAH Center at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

CCC and UP NOAH Center introduces the Geospatial National Analytics Platform (GANaP) for Climate Vulnerability and Disaster Risk Assessment

The Climate Change Commission celebrated the Climate Change Consciousness Week last November 20-24 and highlighted the efforts in putting forward solutions for tackling the challenges of climate change shared by the key stakeholders of the country including, but not limited to, the government, the private sector, and the academe. The activities sought to promote and gather support in taking actions to build resilience in pursuit of sustainable development goals.

One of the main activities was the “Local Climate Change Action Planning: Approaches and Good Practices”, a forum which underlined the significance of community engagement to innovative climate actions and for climate change resilience building. The forum was attended by the Resilience Capacity Building for Cities and Municipalities to Reduce Disaster Risks from Climate Change and Natural Hazards, Phase 1 (Project ReBUILD).

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CCC ReBUILD’s Capacity Building Team and Project Management Unit at the ReBUILD booth during the Local Climate Change Action Planning: Approaches and Good Practices Forum

Project ReBUILD is currently being implemented by the Climate Change Commission – Climate Change Office (CCC-CCO), in collaboration with the University of the Philippines (UP) through the National Institute of Geological Sciences (NIGS), in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and funding assistance from the Government of New Zealand/New Zealand Aid Programme (NZAP). The project aims to improve competencies of local key actors to address disaster risks from natural hazards and impacts of climate change by using science-based vulnerability and risk assessment in the formulation and implementation of measures. One of the outputs of the project is the Geospatial Analytics National Platform which serves as a repository for the exposure, sensitivity, adaptive capacity, and vulnerability and risk level data of the its pilot Local Government Units (LGUs) namely Tuguegarao City and Municipality of Iguig in Cagayan Province and Passi City and Municipalities of Zarraga and Dumangas in Iloilo Province.

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Exposure unit map of the Municipality of Zarraga, Iloilo displayed at the UP NOAH Center website under the ReBUILD feature.

GANaP is an online service where geospatial data such as maps and locations are overlain or displayed on different user preferred base maps. It enables users who do not have access to traditional GIS software to view the said geospatial data.  For the purpose of the project, the UP Nationwide Operational Assessment of Hazards (NOAH) Center website was used as the repository and platform for the abovementioned functionalities. In this way, the LGUs will be able to take advantage of the UP NOAH Center website’s feature while utilizing the vulnerability and risk assessment features that will be produced through Project ReBUILD. Hence, the simulated climate change-adjusted hazard maps will also be displayed on the UP NOAH Center website. For vulnerability and risk assessment (VRA), the GANaP will feature a worksheet where the LGUs can input and display the data needed to complete the exposure database that will be used for conducting VRA. Through this platform, LGUs can input, edit, and save their work. Upon saving, the LGUs will be able to visualize the output of the VRA through vulnerability and risk matrices. The LGU can download the matrices which can be used as input in their Comprehensive Land Use Plans and Local Climate Change Action Plans.

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Vulnerability and disaster risk assessment online platform of Project ReBUILD

In line with these, the LGUs’ representatives will have log-in credentials which will allow them to generate the matrices. In preparation for developing the platform to Decision Support System for LGUs and other stakeholders, the backend of the platform will be arranged in such a way that it can accommodate the conversion of the vulnerability and risk matrices to vulnerability and risk level maps at the city/municipal level.

Written by: By Joy Santiago

UP RI, NOAH Center in KULÊ’s November 21 Issue

In its issue published and distributed on November 21, KULÊ or the Philippine Collegian -- the official student publication of the University of the Philippines Diliman -- wrote an article about the scope and limitations probing the state support for research and development (R&D).

In this section subtitled “Dodging disasters,” KULÊ expounded on the adoption of NOAH by the UP Resilience Institute, citing that “[NOAH and RI] strive to bolster at-risk communities via multidisciplinary disaster risk reduction (DRR) approaches."

Disaster risk is an unresolved problem of development. If you develop the municipalities, then you can make the country progress without being stopped or blocked by hazards, including climate change impacts,” said UP Resilience Institute Executive Director Dr. Mahar Lagmay.

Kule 21 Nov 2017 1 MB

 “Working in this vein, UP RI brings together all available inputs not only from science and technology (S&T) but also such disciplines as the humanities, to craft bottom-up interventions for the more vulnerable populations that live under a constant state of precarity,” the writer added.

Grab a copy of the issue and turn to page 7 to read more about this article.

UP RI at the 9th National Climate Change Consciousness Week

CCC Week 2017

 In celebration of the 9th National Climate Change Consciousness Week which takes place from 20 to 24 November 2017, the Climate Change Commission (CCC) held numerous events at the Sofitel Manila in Pasay City.

UP RI CCC Week 2017

UP RI Executive Director, Dr. Mahar Lagmay (Right) with a UP RI Researcher (Photo by Dumbar Morales)

The UP Resilience Institute (UP RI) was present yesterday at the forum on Local Climate Change Action Planning: Approaches and Good Practices held in the Sunset Pavillon, Sofitel Manila. The event was graced by Senator Loren B. Legarda, CCC Secretary Emmanuel M. De Guzman, Commissioner Noel Antonio Gaerlan, Local Climate Change Adaptation for Development (LCCAD) Inc. Executive Director Manuel C. Rangasa, and UP RI’s Executive Director Dr. Mahar Lagmay.

Gaerlan CCCC Week 2017

CCC Commisioner Noel Gaerlan (Left) with Dr. Mahar Lagmay (Center) and LCCAD Director Manuel C. Rangasa (Right) (Photo by Dumbar Morales)

Another event during the day was the Schools for Resilience (SCORE) Forum where there was a discussion on the incorporation of Disaster Risk and Vulnerability Reduction (DRVR) and Climate Change Adaptation (CCA) knowledge in the K-12 Curriculum. In addition to the participation of the UP RI and LCCAD, DepEd Undersecretary Lorna D. Dino also spoke in front of the audience composed of many public school teachers. Dr. Lagmay also spoke to the teachers later on saying, “With the launch of the national K-12 Curriculum, there will be a new breed of young Filipinos well-versed in CCA and DRVR concepts.”

CCC De Guzman CCC Week 2017

CCC Secretary Emmanuel M. De Guzman at the K-12 Climage Change Seminar (Photo by Dumbar Morales)

It was also here that the K-12 DRR CCA-DRR textbook was launched with various speakers demonstrating the content for subjects such as Filipino, English, Math, Science, and Araling Panlipunan (Social Studies).

UP Resilience Institute at the Malaysia Regional Science Policy Dialogue on Science, Technology and Innovation for Bridging DRR and CCA

Putrajaya, Malaysia -- The UP Resilience Institute's Executive Director, Dr. Mahar Lagmay, spoke at the Regional Science Policy Dialogue on Science, Technology and Innovation for Bridging Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation at the Everly Putrajaya, Malaysia last November 16. The main focus of the meeting was the needs of  the region for innovative science products and services that could advance climate change adaptation through disaster risk reduction. The topic on the UP NOAH Center, as a core component of the UP Resilience Institute, was discussed in the second session which tackled "Experiences in Bridging DRR and CCA."

ANCST Program 16Nov2017

Event Program for the Regional Science Policy Dialogue on Science, Technology and Innovation for Bridging Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation. Download it here.

It was convened by the Asian Network on Climate Science and Technology (ANCST), UNISDR Asian Science Technology Academia Advisory Committee (ASTAAG) and Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research (APN) in conjunction with the National Disaster Management Agency (NADMA), Malaysia Meteorological Department (MMD) and Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia’s Southeast Asia Disaster Prevention Initiative (SEADPRI-UKM).

UP NOAH Malaysia Nov 2017


The findings of the Dialogue will be documented and disseminated to multiple end-users in the region. It will also serve as the basis for formulating future plans on advancing science, technology and innovation that supports both DRR and CCA in conjunction with public-private participation. The report will be made available on the website of ANCST. Dr. Mahar Lagmay, has been a member of the ANCST’s International Scientific Advisory Committee since 2014.