Published : 9:16 am  September 20, 2018 | No comments so far |  | 


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By H.M.Dharmapala and Kusal Chamath   

The coastal belt in Dehiwala – Mount Lavinia area was cleaned under a massive cleaning programme that marked the International Coastal  Cleanup Day. More than 300 volunteers and several foreign tourist participated.  
The programme was organized by the Marine Environmental Protection Authority (MEPA), Mahaweli Development and Environmental Ministry and the Dehiwala – Mount Lavinia Municipal Council with the help of the police and the 
security forces.  

 A large collection of degradable and non-degradable garbage lying along the beach from Mount Lavinia to Dehiwala and along the railway line was removed to the recycling centres by Municipal Vehicles. The non-degradable garbage included plastic bottles, cans, yogurt cups, ice cream containers, and polythene bags and liquor bottles haphazardly discarded by merrymakers and tourists. It was with great difficulty that they cleared the debris of buildings including aluminum sheets discarded during repairs and heaped up in several locations.  

Addressing the inaugural ceremony, Asst. Manager of the MEPA Thalatha Sreeni Ranasinghe said the MEPA was established in pursuance of a declaration of the World Earth Summit in 1992 and by 2008 it had been implemented all over the world. She said the MEPA had implemented the beach cleaning programmes covering 1600 kms of coastal belt.   

“ The garbage disposal has been a burning issue that emerged with the population increase all over the world and Sri Lanka has a fare share of it. Environmental damage caused by haphazard disposal of garbage is a serious threat to health and sanitation. Haphazard disposal of non degradable garbage including plastic and polythene caused extensive environmental damage and polluted the water resources” she said.  

Actg. Municipal Commissioner and Chief Accountant of the Dehiwala – Mount Lavinia Municipal Council K.S.Vithanage requested the merrymakers who visit the beach with their families to refrain from any act causing marine pollution. He stressed the need to organize continual programmes to enhance the beauty of Dehiwala- Mount Lavinia beach which had been a main tourist attraction in the country.   

Environmental Officer of the MEPA Dinithi Gunasena, and Field Officer Wasantha Lal Disanayake were present at the occasion.