Heat in Philippines leads to shift to online classes, prospect of power crunch

The Philippinesm change the idea of in-person sessions in public schools for two days from Monday, warning that the power grid on its main island of Luzon could be strained in a heatwave that is also happening in other regions of Southeast Asia.

Forecasters said temperatures in the capital area could rise to 37 degrees Celsius (98.6 degrees Fahrenheit) in the coming three days, as the heat index hovering at a record 45 degrees C (113 degrees F), makes us worry about the probability of heat stroke from the extraordinarily long exposure.

The heat index, which incorporates relative humidity, could stay in record territory until the second week of May, Glaiza Escullar, a state weather forecaster, revealed to radio station DZBB. We already have reports of high blood pressure and dizziness, and fainting by pupils and teachers in the Last days,” Benjo Basas, chairperson of a group of educators, the Teachers’ Dignity Coalition, told the DWPM radio station.

On Sunday, the education ministry told public schools to switch to online learning because of the heat forecasts, since classrooms can be full of children, and not every classroom has the convenience of air-conditioning. In addition to more than 3.6 million students in the public school system getting impacted by similar suspensions in the past week, many private schools and universities have also switched to online classes.

The heatwave is leading to a lot of pressure on power supplies on Luzon, which contributes three-quarters of economic output, as reserves thin after 13 power plants shut down this month, the grid operator conveyed in a statement.