The project, dubbed Operation Pamamalakaya, was launched by the PAF and its US counterpart in partnership with non-government organization DV Boer Farm, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, Community Environmental and Natural Resources Office and the municipal government of Calatagan.
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Philippines, US troops install artificial habitat reefs
Jaime Laude (The Philippine Star) - August 18, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Filipino and American servicemen have successfully installed 30 artificial reefs that will serve as fish sanctuaries and breeding grounds in the waters of Calatagan in Batangas, the Philippine Air Force (PAF) reported yesterday.

The project, dubbed Operation Pamamalakaya, was launched by the PAF and its US counterpart in partnership with non-government organization DV Boer Farm, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, Community Environmental and Natural Resources Office and the municipal government of Calatagan.

“These reefs will serve as shelter, food sources and breeding site of marine wildlife. Corals will eventually cover the sunken structure, thereby revitalizing marine life and improving fishing livelihood in the coastal communities of Batangas,” said Lt. Col. Engelberto Nioda Jr., chief of PAF’s 730th Combat Group and 710th Special Operations Wing.

Nioda said the activity involved installation of jackstone-type, artificial habitat  reefs made of construction materialsa in the waters off Barangay Hukay in Catalagan.

The country’s coastal waters are suffering from environmental degradation due largely to illegal fishing and garbage dumping by residents.

Nioda described the artificial reef-planting as a lifesaving human endeavor and “a small contribution to the underwater ecosystem, but a great catalyst to the socio-economic development of the coastal communities.”

“The project was a fantastic opportunity for us to partner with our friends in the Philippine Air Force and help preserve the Philippine environment for future generals,” said Maj. Zach Hart, leader of the US team of servicemen and divers who took part in the reef-planting activity.

OPERATION PAMAMALAKAYA PHILIPPINE AIR FORCE US AIR FORCE
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