Thursday, August 31, 2017

DOST chief urges Filipinos to harness S&T innovations for development
By Venus L. Garcia
BUTUAN CITY, Aug. 31 (PIA) – In order to achieve greater heights for economic development and social progress, Science and Technology (DOST) Secretary Fortunato dela Peña is encouraging Filipinos to foster interest in finding innovative solutions through a wide range opportunity in science and technology (S&T).
Dela Peña said that DOST covers a comprehensive scope from agriculture, research and development, and even climate change mitigation, among others. “We are committed to serve the people to improve the quality of life of every Filipino through the use of science and technology,” dela Peña stressed.
The secretary further underscored, during a press conference in celebration of the recently concluded Science and Technology Week held recently in this city, that the department is working on programs to reduce disaster risks, extraction of gold without the use of mercury, programs on malnutrition and scholarship.
While there are advantages and disadvantages in science and technology undertakings, DOST upholds its unabating effort in the furtherance of novel S&T discoveries. “The department continues to embark on projects and innovations that will benefit the people and something that will improve the way of their living,” said Dela Peña.
 S&T for trade and industrial development
The current trend of science and technology has its influence on how industrial sector are running their businesses faster, simpler and more efficient.
Agusan del Norte 1st District Representative Lawrence Fortun, in his message during the opening program of the 2017 National Science and Technology Week celebration, stressed that Caraga is one of the richest regions that is abundant with natural resources and it is opportune time to also use the advantage of S&T in the processing and delivery of the final products to the market.
Engr. Edgar Garcia, Technology Application and Promotion Institute (TAPI)-DOST director underlined that the Food Innovation Center of DOST helps the micro small and medium enterprises in providing them the technology which they could use in making their food processing easier and more convenient.
In Caraga region, the launching of the Caraga's Food Innovation Center, is part of the week-long celebration of the 2017 National Science and Technology Week
DOST Caraga regional director Dominga Mallonga said that the Food Innovation Center located at the Caraga State University (CSU) in this city will help support food processors and other involved in the food value chain to be globally competitive.
“I’d like to thank the different stakeholders, our highly regarded partners, for their continued support to the various programs of the department and I encourage them to diligently work for new technological developments that could eventually help the different industries in the region,” Mallonga said.
Also, Dela Peña added that they are continuously collaborating with other government agencies in trying to look for quality solutions with the use of technology to assist the different sectors in improving their businesses and livelihood. “This will also help achieve sustainable development in the region,” he said.
Dela Peña further said that there are vast opportunities for the Philippines as it collaborates with the other members of the ASEAN community since they could help in giving out resources to be used by the country in improving the industries that could also improve the quality of life of the Filipinos.
S&T for community resiliency
As technology continues to permeate medicine, manufacturing, industry and communication, it also posed greater significance in strengthening community resiliency.
The Department of Science and Technology (DOST)-Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development (PCIEERD) research program entitled “Geo-informatics for the Systematic Assessment of Flood Effects and Risks towards a Resilient Mindanao (Geo-SAFER Mindanao) aims to continue the detailed flood hazard mapping of Mindanao using Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) technology. The official launching here in Caraga region will help enhance flood disaster management and mitigation.
“The Geo-SAFER Agusan Project aims to conduct geo-informatics based approaches for the systematic assessment of flooding in the Agusan River Basin,” said Mallonga.
Meanwhile, DOST Asst. Secretary for Finance and Legal Affairs Atty. Emmanuel Galvez said in a press conference that the department aims to communicate the developments on science and technology in the grassroots level. "We want to inform them of the accomplishments in the field of science and technology and how they can benefit from it," added Galvez.
On the other hand, DOST Sec. Dela Peña highlighted the significance of having a space technology in the country. He added that in the ASEAN community, only four countries which include the Philippines do not have a space technology yet.

Dela Peña encouraged the different sectors in Caraga region to work in the spirit of convergence and cooperation for sustainable development. He further said that S&T have lots of advantages which Caraganons can benefit from. (VLG/PIA-Caraga)