Experts and professors from the Ocean University of China visited Batangas as part of their three-day research and study tour to assess the impact of the earthquake swarm that jolted the province on April 4 and 8.
The Batangas provincial information office, in a report Wednesday, said Governor Hermilando Mandanas welcomed the Chinese University academicians and experts who called on him at the People’s Mansion at the Provincial Capitol.
The Chinese Ocean University officials included Huajun Li, vice president; Qi Li, dean of College of Fisheries; Yunxiang Mao, associate dean of College of Marine Life Sciences; Yirong Luo, associate dean of College of Liberal Arts, Journalism and Communication; Wenhong Song, director of the international office; Dongliang Zheng, program assistant of the international office and university faculty member Philip Xiao.
During their visit to the Capitol, Mandanas appraised them that provincial risk reduction and management council, civil defense and multi-agencies have been conducting rapid disaster assessments and monitoring including relief operations following the triple temblors and intermittent aftershocks.
He also thanked the Chinese university delegation for their interest in conducting marine research and study as part of their partnership with Batangas where the marine biodiversity may have been affected by the recent quakes.
According to the information office, the visiting professors also expressed their interest in exploring the marine biodiversity at the Verde Island Passage off the coastal town of Lobo, Batangas which forms part of the province’s marine studies partnership with the Chinese Ocean University.
Located as part of the town of Lobo, the Verde Island Passage tropical waters had been described as the world’s center for marine biodiversity following marine explorations by a team of US Smithsonian Institute researchers and biodiversity experts to the areas.
Records from the tourism office also showed that various researchers from non-government institutions have been conducting marine studies on the island’s underwater wonderland which teems with more than 300 species of corals, underwater reef formations and rock canyons that host around 60 percent of the world’s shorefish species.
The information office also said the visiting Chinese professors’ itinerary included a study on the impact of the earthquake swarm on the pipelines and marine resources in coordination with the Departments of Energy (DOE), Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and Agriculture (DA).
The Ocean University professors also conducted lectures and educational forums at Batangas State University.
Since the triple quakes that struck Batangas, rapid disaster assessments have been conducted on the effects of the underground movement of Batangas marine and underwater environment including the 500-kilometer Malampaya underwater natural gas pipeline from Palawan to Batangas.
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