Category Archives: environmental degradation

Iranganie Serasinghe: Actress and Environmental Activist

Prasanna Cooray, in Island, 18 June 2017,  with the title “Irangani: Mother figure of Sinhala Cinema and Environmental Activism””

Irangani Serasinghe needs no introduction in this country. She is convinced that as for the destruction of our environment politicians have to take the blame. She says, “The worst ar e the politicians. We have to protect our trees and environment mostly from them”, said Irangani Serasinghe. At 90, yet agile and full of vigour, she has fought man a battle, tooth and nail, on the environment front for decades.

On June 3, she chaired the seminar under the theme, “Destruction of central hills – Death of future of the country” held at Mahaweli Center in Colombo where I was one of the speakers. The seminar brought to light the environmental destruction and misery brought to the lives of the people in Welimada plain by the ongoing Uma Oya multipurpose development project. There she told me she would be 90 in a few days. On June 9 Irangani celebrated her 90th birthday. Continue reading

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Predator-Proof Fence to create Huge Wild Life Sanctuary

Paige Taylor  in The Australian, 13 June 2017,   where the title is “Predator-proof ploy foils feral-fed catastrophe”

Work has begun northwest of Alice Springs on the world’s largest predator-proof animal enclosure. It has come to this for our endangered species. The 185km electrified fence will separate feral cats from the marsupials they have pushed to the edge of extinction.  The non-profit Australian Wildlife Conservancy is buying vast tracts of the bush and fencing out feral cats that kill between five and seven animals each night.

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Manmade Garbage Landslide at Meethotamulla: A World First?

Iromi Perera and Vijay Nagaraj, in http://dbsjeyaraj.com/dbsj/archives/52489 where the title runs “Meethotamulla: The tragedy of the poor victimised in the name of development”

On the afternoon of 14 April tonnes of garbage at Meethotamulla, one of the biggest dumping sites just outside Colombo, came crashing down destroying scores of homes. At the time of writing, the death toll was reportedly 26 but was expected to rise. There have been serious allegations made by the affected community that rescue efforts did not even begin in earnest till very late into the night owing to a lack of direction and the failure of authorities. According to Nuwan Bopage, a lawyer representing residents of Meethotamulla, people were left using shovels to get to those buried. “During that whole time we could hear the dying breath of those buried under the garbage,” he said at a media conference the next day.

Meethotamulla Rahula Vidyalaya

Behind the tragedy is a litany of broken promises—including an assurance by the Prime Minister himself in 2015 of solving the problem within six months—and protests being met with tear gas or batons. A group of residents from Meethotamulla approached the Supreme Court in 2014 seeking to stop the dumping of garbage.
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Aleppo Then and Now in Pictures

Photo Comparison: Aleppo City – Before and After ‘Arab Spring’

The Viralscape website released a series of interesting photos that allows to observe how the Arab Spring and its results changed the city of Aleppo.

ALEPPO 22

 

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A World First in Ecological Care: Mangroves of Sri Lanka rendered a Protected Habitat

Sri Lanka first nation to protect all mangrove forests”

Sri Lanka has become the first nation in the world to comprehensively protect all of its mangrove forests. A scheme backed by the government will include alternative job training, replanting projects and microloans. Mangroves are considered to be one of the world’s most at-risk habitats, with more than half being lost or destroyed in the past century. Conservationists hope other mangrove-rich nations will follow suit and adopt a similar protection model. Commenting on the agreement, Sri Lanka President Maithripala Sirisena said: “It is the responsibility and the necessity of all government institutions, private institutions, non-government organisations, researchers, intelligentsia and civil community to be united to protect the mangrove ecosystem.”

MANGROVES

The Sri Lankan government is a joint partner overseeing the measures, alongside global NGO Seacology, and Sri Lanka-based Sudeesa, which was formerly known as the Small Fishers Federation of Lanka. Seacology executive director Duane Silverstein said the pioneering framework had “extreme importance as a model” that could be used throughout the world. Continue reading

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Chris Panabokke, exemplary soil scientist, turns 88

Ranjit Mulleriyawa, in The Nation, 3 March 2014

CHRIS PANABOKKEMention the name CR Panabokke, and the first thing that comes to one’s mind is soil science. Indeed, he is unquestionably the foremost soil scientist produced by our country to date, as well as one of Asia’s most renowned soil scientists. He has authored many books and published over 30 research papers in reputed International journals in addition to presenting 35 scientific papers at national and international workshops/conferences on: Soils of Sri Lanka and fertilizer use, groundwater conditions in Sri Lanka, small village tank systems, and agro-ecological environments of Sri Lanka. Continue reading

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Estimates of the Death Toll among the Fighting Forces of the LTTE and Government of Sri Lanka

Michael Roberts

49c-Balraj with fellow fighters on a Main Battle Tank seized by the Tigers in IththaavilCol Balraj and Tiger fighters after the capture of a battle tank during the encirclement of Elephant Pass in April 2000…. SEE http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0rXdXYPgjgM

LTTE

1a = 21,051 from 27 Nov. 1982 [Shankar] – 6 June 2008 ………………………………………………of which 4,535 or 21.5 % were female.[1]

1b = ??? 13,000 as a guess for rest of the period June 2008-end 2009… ……………………………………………………….making a total of ………….34,000 perhaps?

2 = 22,247 cadres (with 11,812 identified by name during Eelam War IV alone[2]

3 = thereby suggesting that the total Liberation Tiger losses for the whole period 1982-2009 could even add up to 40,000 (being 22,000 for E-War IV and roughly 18,000 in the three previous phases of war) Continue reading

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