Every year, the Philippines is hit with different typhoons. In 2013, the Philippines was struck with the Super Typhoon Haiyan (international name) or known as the Super Typhoon Yolanda in the Philippines. Typhoon Yolanda claimed 7,350 dead or missing people, making it the strongest and deadliest tropical cyclone to have ever been recorded in the Philippines. Tacloban was the city that was devastated the most during the onslaught of Typhoon Yolanda. The residents of Tacloban endured the heavy winds, floods and landslides that tore about a million homes and took thousands of lives.

This is only one of the many natural disasters in the Philippines. Since the Philippines is situated in the Pacific Ring of Fire, volcanic eruptions and earthquakes also often happen. Although the Philippines takes a lot of preventive measures to prepare for these natural disasters, we can always never be too sure of our safety.

In collaboration with the Japanese Industrial Standards Committee (JISC), International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) and Asia-Pacific Cooperation Forum (APCF), the Department of Trade and Industry – Bureau of Philippine Standards (DTI-BPS) hosted the JISC/IEC/APCF Seminar on Natural Disaster Countermeasures for National Resilience held at The Peninsula Manila, Makati City on 15 February 2019.

With IEC expert speakers from different companies, the seminar presented how standards can help the Philippines to prepare and recover effectively from disasters.


Director James E. Empeño of the Bureau of Philippine Standards opened the event stating that, “while it is true that the Filipinos are known for being resilient and for being able to smile despite the occurrence of both natural and man-made disasters, it must be noted that this should be accompanied with vigilance and preparedness”. Director Empeño also added that the Philippine government has been very active in implementing projects such as the ‘Build, Build, Build’ program to help the country and its citizens prepare for the disasters and also recover from such.

Mr. Dennis Chew, Regional Director of the IEC – Asia-Pacific Regional Centre, and Mr. Kentaro Tsunozaki from the JISC and Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), presented the key updates on their respective offices. Mr. Chew reported that IEC has grown in the recent years with over 171 countries joining in using IEC standards and 20,000 experts around the world have contributed to the development of the IEC standards that shows that the network of experts from different countries have been working together in contributing to the growth of the IEC.

Mr. Chew also highlighted the IEC’s Affiliate Country Programme. Established in 2001, the program provides an opportunity for developing countries around the world to participate in the IEC. Another program of the IEC is the Young Professionals Programme where the world’s young electrotechnology experts and soon to be leaders come together in IEC. The IEC is also planning to introduce a new training called, “One Standard in One Day” where they train people how to develop standards in one day through a hands-on process. This training will begin with the Young Professionals Programme and once it is fully operational, they will be introducing this training to all IEC members.

Mr. Kentaro Tsunozaki started with a short introduction of JISC as the National Standards Body (NSB) of Japan and followed with the collaborations between Japan and the ASEAN. He
also discussed key updates on the following:

  • Business Machine/Equipment – Japan-ASEAN Integration Fund (JAIF) project on capacity building of conformity assessment and testing of product safety and electromagnetic compatibility

Electrical and Electronic Equipment – Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) workshop on standard and regulation development and testing of

  • safety requirements of electrical and electronic equipment
  • LED Lighting – The Association for Overseas Technical Cooperation and Sustainable Partnerships (AOTS) program on supporting of the implementation of LED road lights in Vietnam
  • IC Card Driving License – Vietnam Standards and Quality Institute (VSQI) and JISC workshop for Vietnam on IEC/ISO 18013 Standards

For IEC TC 81 on Lightning Protection, Dr. Shigeru Yokoyama of Shizuoka University explained the protective measures for buildings and power distribution lines. Under these protective measures are the standards for protection against lighting in TC 81:

  • IEC 62305-1 General Principles
  • IEC 62305-2 Risk Management
  • IEC 62305-3 Physical Damage to Structures and Life Hazard
  • IEC 62305-4 Electrical and Electronic Systems within Structures

Dr. Yokoyama authored the mitigation methods that contains the designing procedure of lighting protection measures and the lighting outage aspects on overheard power distribution lines (OPDLs) mainly found in Japan. Through this, countermeasures can be acted upon through long-time electrical service, short-time electrical service interruption, momentary voltage drop and less facility damage.

As the chairman of IEC SC 37A and IEC SC 37 B on Low-voltage surge protective device (SPD) and component (SPC), Dr. Hidetaka Sato of NTT Facilities, Inc and Japan National Committee presented the importance of SPDs as lighting protection that can prevent the risk of catastrophic fire hazard in oil tanks. IEC 62305-3 Edition2.0:2010-12 Protection against lightning – Part3: Physical damage to structures and life hazard, and IEC 62305-4 Edition2.0:2010-12 Protection against lightning – Part 4: Electrical and electronic systems within structures, are the standards for the positioning of surge protection measures using SPDs in total lightning protection system. The IEC National Committee of Japan is also proposing a new work item of Surge Isolation Transformers (SIT) for a communication system which is a key component of a Self-Contained Isolation System (SIS) that will be necessary for lightning-surge protection method.

(from left to right) Dr. Hidetaka Sato of NTT Facilities, Inc. during his presentation of the importance of surge protective devices as lighting protection and Mr. Tatsuya Shimoji of Panasonic Corporation during his presentation on City Service Continuity

Smart City Standardization also contributes to recovery after disasters as explained by Mr. Tatsuya Shimoji from Panasonic Corporation and the IEC/SyC Smart Cities PT63152 Project Leader. PT63153 or City Service Continuity (CSC) against disaster’s basic policy is how a city, area or facility can survive when some severe disaster happens and electric supply from infrastructure stops. This focuses on the electricity aspect since electricity is very essential for sustaining city services. Electricity Continuity Plan (ECP) and Electricity Continuity System (ECS) is the content of the CSC’s disaster countermeasures. Electricity Continuity Plan (ECP) is an action plan to provide emergency measures and processes for securing electricity supply continuity while the Electricity Continuity System (ECS) is the defining necessary device, equipment and interoperability for continuously supplying electricity in disasters.

Mr. Tomotaka Kimura from the Mitsubishi Electric Corporation presented the IEC SC22H Uninterruptible Power System (UPS). According to Mr. Kimura, UPS is necessary since after a power failure occurs, the emergency generator could start, and the power could be supplied to each facility from the emergency generator. He further discussed the basic configuration and operation of UPS, its topology and system configuration, and also its application or the power failure and the instantaneous voltage drop.

(from left to right) Mr. Tomotaka Kimura of Mitsubishi Electric Corporation and Dr. Satoru Goto of Niigata Power Systems co., Ltd. discuss the importance of power systems and power generation respectively.

ISO/TC70/WG10 Reciprocating internal combustion engine driven generating sets, was discussed by Dr. Satoru Goto from Niigata Power Systems co., Ltd. Dr. Goto explained how power generation is one of the countermeasures against natural disaster through a series of steps taken from the Design Flow of Emergency Power Generation Plant (in Japan). The demand for emergency power generation facilities for BCP (Business Continuity Plan) is increasing in order to minimize the impact of power outages caused by natural disasters, major earthquakes, etc.

Concluding the event is Dr. Mitsuo Matsumoto, Deputy Secretary General of JISC, who expressed his thanks to everyone who actively participated in the event. Dr. Matsumoto believes that smart societies with new technologies contributes to a Smart City and hopes that everyone will continue to keep working closely especially ASEAN countries. At the beginning of the seminar he also stated that standards play a significant role in establishing a good emergency preparedness mechanism and hopes that this will also further the cooperation in IEC’s standardization activities in the region.

The DTI-BPS, the host for this event, is the National Standards Body of the Philippines. It is the Philippines’ member to the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC).♦

Date of Release: 10 April 2019