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Sri Lanka: Sea of trash: Inland and overseas garbage washes up on Lanka’s beaches by Randima Attygalle February 12,2018   |  Source: The Sunday Times

The mounting coastal litter along Colombo’s coastal belt and other tourist areas of the country is increasingly becoming breeding grounds for dengue.From plastic bottles to electrical appliances, the list of what ends up along the coast as litter is endless. While tiny particles of discarded plastics (the micro plastic) are destroying marine life, the mounting non-degradable waste tarnishes the country’s image as a tourist paradise. The Maritime Environment Protection Authority’s (MEPA) spent millions of rupees on coastal cleanups last year — a reflection of “spending public money for public waste,” as the MEPA’s General Manager and CEO, Dr. Terney Pradeep Kumara, puts it.

A large proportion of the problem is attributable to inland waste, he notes. “It is not merely what is dumped directly on the beaches, but all that flows through canals and rivers,” he says, pointing out that other triggers, including the fisheries and the tourism sector, are only secondary to inland waste which ends up on the coast. Added to the burden is the garbage which flows from India, Indonesia and Thailand, he says. The MEPA’s role in controlling pollution covers Sri Lanka’s 1640 km coastal belt and extends up to 200 nautical miles to the deep sea, the area, which, according to

 

© The Sunday Times Sri Lanka

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