Category Issues

Another land grab in Hambantota – in Village in the Jungle

By Dr Prsanna Cooray (The Island ,2017,01,15)

Close on the heels a move to hand over 15,000 acre land to the Chinese in Medilla in the Ambalantota Divisional Secretary Division in Hambantota District, come the news of a land grab comes from another corner of the same district––in the Suriyawewa Divisional Secretary Division. This time around, it is in a village in the jungle called Nabadegaswewa.

The Nabadegaswewa catchment reserve is a stretch of lush vegetation inhabited by a copious array of wildlife. This stretch of land has an exciting history to boost its vital environmental significance. It is home to two important watersheds of the Manamperi and Katuwewa tanks...

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Port City Project: Development or disaSter

By Kalani Kumarasinghe (Daily mirror)
The Port City project -stalled, suspended and recommenced-has been under public scrutiny for various reasons. Five years in the making, the project has withstood regime change, public protests and spurious criticism levelled by political parties and personalities who have changed their tunes according to election whims.
Nevertheless a group of activists who voiced their concerns over the detrimental consequences of the project have remained relentless. They still believe that the Port City project will be the greatest self-inflicted ecological hazard to Sri Lanka. The approached several environmental activists to query their stance on the project. Among them was Rev. Fr...

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by Duminda Alahakoon (Activist)

A country shaped like a teardrop, located in the Indian Ocean, at the end of southern tip of Indian continent called Sri Lanka. Once upon a time, considered as the granary of the Eastern World. As for centuries, farmers there used to largely produce rice. Not only to feed the country but also the world. Today that famous crown has become a thorny one, falling on those farmer’s heads drawing them into an undefeatable suffering of an epidemic for nearly three decades.

CKDU otherwise known as Chronic Kidney Disease of Unknown remains as a silent epidemic in Sri Lanka due to its lack of symptoms at disease onset, complex multifactorial aetiology and social determinants...

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Do Or Die Battle Looms At Uma Oya

by Ifham Nizam

Farmers cannot be sidelined in a country which is dependent on agriculture
Recent landslides in Koslanda could in fact be a result of the Uma Oya project as well
Uma Oya project is witnessing large scale land grabbing by politicians

Uma Oya Project: Development or disaster…
Plans are underway to stage a massive protest against the much debated Uma Oya Multipurpose Development Project. A number of villagers would join hands on Thursday, December 29 as a mark of solidarity against the ongoing project.
Speaking to The Sunday Leader villagers in Bandarawela said that despite their hue and cry, the authorities were not taking any action to avert their short falls especially when it comes to agricultural...

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Interim iInjunction Issued Over Chunnakam Power Plant in Jaffna,Sri Lanka

Interim injunction was issued by the Supreme Court against further function of Jaffna-Chunnakam Northern Power plant.
This was regarding a petition made by Director for Center for Environment and Nature Studies (CENS) Ravindra Kariyawasam stating the environmental pollution cause by the plant. This court case were handled free of charge by Layer Nuwan Bopage and Layer Chathura Wettasinghe .
Protests were held in Jaffna last week against alleged crude oil leakage by Chunnakam power plant last year.
The protests which included students of schools, as well as hunger strikers demanded that action be taken to resolve the issue of leakage of crude oil by the Thermal power plant, which is alleged to be the cause of water contamination in wells in Jaffna.
Prof. Daya Somasundaram
University of Ja...

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Development At A Cost To The Environment

by Hafsa Sabry (
Environmentalists have opposed moves by the government to encroach 99 acres of land from the Sripada (Adam’s peak) sanctuary to build cable wire cars and luxury hotels under an Urban Development Authority (UDA) project.
Out of 12, 329 acres, the project proposes to construct cable wire cars and hotels in 99 acres in the holy grounds of Sripada but environmentalists and the environmental protection organisations raised concerns ever since the plan was proposed in 2013 by the previous government.
The Center for Environment and Nature Studies (CENS) stated that the project has taken a fresh start under a new name in the claim of boosting the tourism industry in Sri Lanka...

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A tourist hotel is being built in jewelled hill (Al-Rohun,Siripada ,Shiva padam , Adem s peak )

A tourist hotel is being built in Marewattha in Sirpada (Adam’s peak ) forest ,Sri Lanka . The project was started in 2013 and it belonged to Basila Rajapakse , brother of former president Mahinda Rajepakse .
A cabinet paper was brought to parliament by Mahinda Rajapakse in 2013 to allocate 99 acres from Adam’s peak sanctuary for cable car and tourist hotel projects. At the time they started to build the hotel project without any environmental impact assessment and any permission from Center environment Authority, wild life department, and Agrological department or Environment ministry.
The illegal hotel projects were stopped in the same year, due to the protest of environmentalist and left politicians. But same hotel project has being started under Yahapalana government.
According to...

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HRCSL concealed probe reports : Environmentalists

The Human Rights Commission is yet to issue its final report after completing investigations around 18 months ago into a complaint lodged by the Centre for Environment and Nature Studies (CENS) against the Colombo port city project.

The Central Environment Authority, Coast Conservation Authority and the Ports Authority have admitted not giving approval for the project, coordinator of the CENS – Ravindra Kariyawasam told ‘Sri Lanka Mirror’.

The delay in releasing the report means a delay in measures to conserve environment, he noted.

This is a violation of the public’s freedom to right to information as well.

In a letter to the Speaker – CENS says that the HRC has not released its report into The Kelani being contaminated by Coca Cola’s Biyagama factory.
The Central Environmental Author...

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Floods Forever Change Sri Lankans- Lives; Government Debates About What Went Wrong

By Nirasha Priyawardani -Global press journal

KOTIKAWATTA, SRI LANKA – Athula Priyakantha woke up on May 16 to heavy rain that had been pelting down since the previous day.
The rain, part of tropical cyclone Roanu, didn’t concern him. The house, just east of Colombo, Sri Lanka’s commercial capital, isn’t in a flood-prone area. In fact, the last time Priyakantha’s home experienced minor flooding was in 1989, when rainwater breached the banks of the Kelani River.
By the afternoon of that day, there were reports that the river was overflowing. Still, the rain had stopped, and Priyakantha, 44, who lives with his wife and their two children, agreed with his neighbors that they weren’t in any danger.
But the next morning, Priyakantha and his family woke to find several inches of water inside t...

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Wind energy vs. hydropower

Wind energy projects cause minimum harm to environment from among small scale power plants, says environmentalist Ravindra Kariyawasam.

He is commenting to Sri Lanka Mirror about media reports that the proposed wind energy generation project in Mannar will cause harms to bird life and to environment.

The biggest damage to environment comes from the 150-odd hydropower plants proposed to be built in the central hills, he says.

These power plants will be constructed on 160 water sources, he notes.

The IEA has proved through research that small hydropower plants have been a failure, as they harm underground water sources while failing to supply for the demand.

Ideal options will be the green and renewable energy sources such as the wind, solar and sea waves, Kariyawasam says.

A country like Sr...

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