Monday, October 5, 2015

El Niño to cost 1 million Agricultural Jobs this year

The Bureau of Agricultural Statistics has released data that as of April this year that there was a marked decline in the number of agricultural workers by 400,000 from 11.8 million last year 2014. This was caused by the intense heat generated by the El Niño phenomenon that greatly affected the crops and fisheries subsector.

There is a clamor from the Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) that the government include the agricultural workers sector it in its El Niño rescue plan. This is also to arrest the pattern of decline in the number of agricultural workers that started in 2011. Records from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) indicated that there were 12.2 million agricultural workers in 2011 then a continued decrease to 12 million in 2012, 11.83 million in 2013, and 11.8 million by 2014.

In July this year, unemployment in the sector rose to 755,000 workers. The National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) also cited the El Niño phenomenon with the contraction of the Philippine agricultural industry. According to PAGASA, 58% of the country is currently affected by El Niño and that it is projected that by February 2016, 85% of the country will be affect.

The El Niño phenomenon is caused by the warming of the waters off the coast of Peru because of the eruptions of an undersea volcano. This causes changes in sea water temperature that results in changes in the currents of the oceans and the jetstream in the atmosphere. Severe weather is one of the causes and that reversal of climate behaviour are felt all around the world that affects agriculture.

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The Mail Man

Author & Editor - The Philippines' Web Magazine on Agriculture.

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