2002, May (4th week)
The Sangguniang Panlalawigan (provincial board) declared Ilocos Norte under a calamity state, in a move to preempt the disastrous impact of the El Niño phenomenon on the province’s agricultural sector. The onslaught of El Niño is characterized by a warm inshore current annually flowing south along the coast of Ecuador. Every 7 to 1 – years it extends to Peru and other areas around the world, with devastating consequences to weather, crops, and aquatic resources. In Ilocos, fears had been aired as early as April when farmlands started drying up.