According to the Huila Departmental Office for Disaster Risk Management, there are several municipalities that may face water shortages, both for consumption and for maintaining crops.
Newspaper of Huila, Huila
By: Gloria Camargo
According to the Institute of Hydrology, Meteorology and Environmental Studies (Ideam), the chances of a moderate intensity phenomenon occurring increased to 84%, with a 56% chance of it evolving into a strong event between November 2023 and January 2023. 2024. These predictions have generated concern in various regions of the country.
As a result of this alert, nine municipalities have been activated with alerts for forest fires. The largest concentration of these municipalities is in La Guajira, where six of them have been registered. The rest of the municipalities are located in Atlántico, Casanare and Cundinamarca. Local authorities have intensified prevention and control measures to prevent the spread of fires.
In addition to the alerts in La Guajira, other areas of the country have also been affected by forest fires. In the department of Huila, specifically in Neiva, a fire was reported that affected one hectare of pasture near the Surabastos area. Another fire broke out in Teruel, in the village of El Almorzadero, where half a hectare of land burned. Likewise, in Villavieja a fire was reported that impacted five hectares of pasture, and in Hato Nuevo the stubble of a lemon crop was affected.
Faced with these incidents, the entities and unions in charge of monitoring the forestry sector are working together to control and extinguish the fires. Firefighters, Civil Defense and other response organizations are making efforts to mitigate the damage and protect the affected areas. The collaboration of the community is also essential to prevent and report any outbreak of fire.
As the year progresses and the period of greatest risk of forest fires approaches, it is crucial that prevention measures are strengthened and awareness about caring for the environment is promoted. The authorities call on citizens to avoid actions that could generate fire in natural areas and to report any risk situation in a timely manner.
Alerts in Huila
Orlando Garzón Garzón, in charge of the Disaster Management Process of the Huila Departmental Office for Disaster Risk Management, has called attention to the current climate situation in the region.
Garzón pointed out that the second dry season of 2023 has been underway since mid-June, which increases the risk of forest fires and other related disasters.
The decrease in water tributaries could affect the supply of drinking water in the municipal capitals.
In relation to this dry season, preliminary reports have been made on three municipalities that have faced situations of forest fires during the weekend. Garzón stressed that these burns are strictly prohibited and stressed the importance of taking measures to prevent and control fires throughout the region.
In addition to the threat of forest fires, Garzón highlighted the presence of high temperatures in the department. In view of this situation, he urged all municipalities to implement the corresponding contingency plans to deal with the dry season and the possibility that the climatic variability phenomenon known as ‘El Niño’ will negatively affect the Andean region and the department from Huila.
The warnings made by technical entities such as Ideam indicate that the occurrence of ‘El Niño’ is practically a fact. This could have detrimental consequences for the region, making preventive and response measures all the more urgent. Garzón stressed the importance of preparing and acting in advance in the event of any impact that may result from this climatic phenomenon.
rains and fires
Despite concerns about the dry season, the Institute of Hydrology, Meteorology and Environmental Studies (Ideam) continues to forecast that rainfall in much of the national territory will be below normal levels for the month of June. According to the Ideam, the probability of rainfall below the normal thresholds exceeds 50%.
Regarding forest fires, Orlando Garzón Garzón reported that, according to reports from the Municipal Risk Management Councils, there have been seven fire events that have affected a total of 24 hectares, mainly grass and stubble. The most affected municipalities so far are Neiva and Villavieja, which have had a greater recurrence of these events in the northern part of the department.
Faced with this situation, Garzón called for the preparation and articulation of contingency plans with emergency response strategies. He highlighted the importance of informing the community about the possible risks associated with the dry season and the ‘El Niño’ phenomenon. Likewise, he highlighted the need for a timely response by all operational entities and relief agencies of the Departmental Risk Management System.
Orlando Garzón Garzón, professional from the Huila Departmental Office for Disaster Risk Management.
Prevention and preparation are key elements to face the risks derived from the dry season and ‘El Niño’. Garzón urged the community to become aware of the importance of adopting preventive measures in their homes and workplaces. Likewise, he stressed the need to stay informed about the indications and recommendations of local authorities in case of an emergency situation.
Collaboration and coordination between authorities, relief agencies and the community are essential to mitigate the effects of wildfires and other weather-related disasters. Garzón stressed the importance of strengthening cooperation ties and working together to protect life and natural resources in the department of Huila.
Given the current scenario, it is essential that citizens be attentive to the forecasts and recommendations of the competent entities. Up-to-date information and a timely response are key to minimizing the impacts of the dry season and the ‘El Niño’ phenomenon. Garzón concluded by emphasizing the importance of the active participation of all the actors involved in risk management to guarantee the safety and well-being of the community.
The Ideam pointed out that the rain forecast will be below normal levels.
The risk of drought and the consequent impact on the supply of drinking water are cause for concern in the department of Huila. Orlando Garzón Garzón, professional in charge of the Disaster Management Process of the Departmental Office for Disaster Risk Management, has pointed out that the dry season and the possibility of the ‘El Niño’ phenomenon increase the probability of a water shortage. in the region.
Several municipalities have been identified as especially vulnerable to this situation. Garzón stressed that the Regional Autonomous Corporation of Alto Magdalena (CAM), Aguas del Huila and the Ministry of Agriculture have been formally informed about the municipalities at risk and have been urged to take contingency measures. The decrease in the flow of water tributaries due to the dry season could affect the supply of drinking water in the municipal capitals.
In addition to the drinking water supply, there is also the risk of water shortages for crops in some municipalities. The Ministry of Agriculture has provided information on this situation, and has coordinated with the relevant sectors to program strategies and contingency plans.
In addition to the drinking water supply, there is also the risk of water shortages for crops.
Municipalities such as Neiva, Hobo, Campoalegre, Rivera, Colombia, Pitalito, Acevedo, Tarqui and Santa María have been identified as especially vulnerable due to the incidence of the dry season and the ‘El Niño’ phenomenon.