Philippine President Benigno Aquino III has announced an $8.3 billion flood control plan for the nation, promising a “permanent solution” to the ongoing challenges. The plan calls for the construction of water impounding structures and catch basins, and will take years to complete. The effort is not without its critics; some express doubt that the resources will be available, as well as concern for the hundreds of thousands of people–many of them informal settlers along the waterways–who will be displaced by the 11 related infrastructure projects.
Torrential rains aggravated by typhoons hit the Philippines again this year, submerging 80 percent of Manila in early August. More than 2.4 million people have been affected by the multiple days of rain, and about 362,300 people evacuated. According to the government, another 284,200 people are staying with relatives and friends. Sixty people have died while others remain missing; so far, the government has lead the relief operation and has not requested international aid.