MANILA — The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a $303 million loan to reduce flood and climate risks and protect people and livelihoods in three major river basins in the Philippines, one of the most vulnerable countries to the effects of climate change and disasters caused by natural hazards.
The Integrated Flood Resilience and Adaptation Project – Phase 1 will upgrade and construct flood protection infrastructure in the Abra river basin in the country’s northern Luzon region and the Ranao/Agus and Tagum–Libuganon river basins in the southern Mindanao region. The infrastructure takes into account future climate change impacts and incorporates nature-based solutions such as restoring and reconnecting old river channels for natural drainage and reinforcing riverbanks with mangroves and vegetation planting.
“Climate change is expected to raise risks from extreme weather events. These river basin communities are highly vulnerable to climate-related hazards, as we have seen in recent years when typhoons destroyed infrastructure, displaced families, and damaged crops,” said ADB Senior Water Resources Specialist Junko Sagara. “The project will help lessen these risks and improve income and livelihood opportunities, especially for the poor and vulnerable.”
The project will help strengthen the Philippines’ capacity to perform flood risk management planning by providing training for government officials, installing equipment for weather and river flow monitoring and early flood warning, and introducing an asset management information system.
The project aims to boost community-based flood risk management by supporting 22 local government units and about 150 barangays in updating their climate and disaster risk assessments and integrating flood risk management in local development plans. Training activities will be conducted to build the capacity of communities in climate change adaptation and managing flood risks. The project will include civil society organizations and beneficiary groups in its planning and implementation.
The feasibility study and design for the project were supported by ADB’s Infrastructure Preparation and Innovation Facility, which has been helping Philippine government agencies access information on up-to-date technology and innovative designs in building major infrastructure projects since 2017.
The project is aligned with the Philippine government’s climate priorities under its National Climate Change Action Plan, 2011–2028, and the Philippine Development Plan, 2023–2028. It is complemented by policy reforms being pursued under ADB’s Climate Change Action Program, which is the bank’s first climate action policy-based loan, and the Competitive and Inclusive Agriculture Development Program, which aims to lift agriculture resilience and productivity and enhance food security.
ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members—49 from the region.