News Briefs: February 3, 2017

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Stories from across the Philippines on Friday, February 3

No flying near Bulusan volcano until February 4 morning

MANILA – A notice to airmen is in effect until 9 am on Saturday, February 4, as volcanic quakes were recorded coming from Mount Bulusan in Sorsogon. The Notam issued by the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) took effect 8 am of Friday. 

Alert Level 1 indicates that hydrothermal processes are underway beneath the volcano that may lead to steam-driven or phreatic eruptions.

CAAP advised pilots to “avoid flying close to the volcano summit as airborne ash from a sudden eruption can be hazardous to aircraft.”

The Notam, which is valid for 24 hours, may be renewed depending on the activity of Mount Bulusan. – 


9 universities to get CHED funding for agriculture projects


The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) has approved the release of P61.5 million to fund 11 projects proposed by 9 higher education institutions. The projects are aimed at “improving the country’s food production, achieving food security, and fostering inclusive growth and sustainable development in the field of agriculture and fisheries.” 

Approved were projects from:

  • Mindanao State University in General Santos
  • Bataan Peninsula State Universy
  • Partido State University in Sagnay
  • Central Luzon State University
  • Bicol University
  • Mariano Marcos State University
  • Surigao del Sur State University
  • Catanduanes State University
  • Western Philippines University

Among the projects approved are:

  • Establishment of the Community Science and Technology Based Farm on Rice-Fish Farming (“Palayisdaan Pamayanan) in Bataan
  • Enhancing Resilience of Vulnerable Upland and Lowland Communities through eCenters with S&T-based, Climate Smart and Sustainable Innovations in Bicol
  • Community-Level Capacity Building for the Utilization of Renewable Energy in General Santos City 

All approved projects must be implemented within two years, the CHED said. –  


Pagasa receives 2 Doppler radars from JICA

MANILA – The Philippines’ state weather bureau received this week the last 2 of 3 Doppler radars from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) as part of the 3.35-billion-yen official development assistance. 

The project will helping the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) measure rainfall and wind speed for a timely, accurate warning system.

“By sharing Japan’s resources and expertise to Pagasa, as we have been doing since the 1970s, we aim to help the local communities step up its disaster response work,” said JICA Chief Representative Susumu Ito.

The first radar was already installed in Virac, Catanduanes, in 2012. The two others were installed in Aparri and Guiuan. The last one was damaged by Super Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) in 2013 but rehabilitated under a grant aid project for Typhoon Yolanda-hit areas in 2015.

JICA is also working with Pagasa for projects that aim to improve disaster risk communication in communities and integrating data management systems for flood forecasting and warning. – 


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