Sri Lanka’s forests are currently facing the biggest threat to its survival due to the cabinet decision to revoke the 5/2001 circular which for almost 2 decades granted protection to approximately 500,000 hectares of forests classified as “Other State Forests”. Many environmental organizations and individuals including Rainforest Protectors of Sri Lanka are currently fighting against this decision actively involved in collective action against the removal of circular 5/2001. In addition we have also been liaising with the minister to temporarily halt the illegal clearings of other state forests, before a legal acquisition process.
Action against Deforestation in Sinharaja Rainforest
- Many land clearing incidents, conversions and developments in Handapaanella, Delwala Walankanda and Rosemary Estate in the Sinharaja World Heritage Rainforest complex were attended to and halted.
- Continuously worked with our contacts adjoining Sinharaja to ensure deforestation issues are addressed promptly.
(Muthurajawela, Bolgoda, Wedithalathivu)
- Working with Muthurajawela communities and Authorities on continued pressure on wetland conversions. Several issues of illegal filling activities reported to authorities and action underway. SLLRDC is planning to fill more than 100 acre area without an EIA for the proposed LNG plant.
- Collective action (Ongoing litigation) to protect Bolgoda with Delthara Environment Organization.
- Several mangrove destruction incidents got reported and matters were informed to respective authorities. Inquiries underway.
- Visiting Wedithalthivu and meeting the community to mobilize them on a proposed aquaculture project that will put the lagoon in danger. Liaising with respective bodies to show our strong opposition to degazetting part of the nature reserve.
Conservation of Knuckles Cloud Forest
Carried out a field survey on communities living inside Knuckles conservation forest. Addressing issues propped up due to unregulated tourism activities including that of Meemure.
Action against Ecologically destructive Mini-Hydro Projects
Several Hydro power projects are threatening ecosystems. Girankitta oya mini hydro and Seethawaka ganga projects are causing significant damage. Public awareness and mobilization activity is ongoing.
Action against Sand Mining and Metal Quarry Environmental Issues
- Exposed sand dredging of Mahaweli river by Geological Survey and Mines Bureau itself in the guise of a river bank restoration project.
- Numerous cases of metal quarries and social environmental impacts from Embilipitiya to Kaluthara are attended to. Working with the community on finding amicable solutions.
Action against other Environmental Issues
- Contributed to PUCSL public comments on External Costs of Thermal Power Generation”, highlighting the need to move to renewables.
- Continued action on the Beach Nourishment Project that was done without an EIA.
It is the responsibility of everyone and not just the environmentalists to take some responsibility towards stopping the ongoing massive destruction of our forests, rivers, streams, waterfalls and the pollution of air and water. Rainforest Protectors of Sri Lanka is a local environmental organization with support provided by only a few individuals. If you can help, please call 0777771348 or email RainforestProtectors@gmail.com
Rainforest Protectors of Sri Lanka