Environmentalists throw light on threat to valuable Ilmenite deposit and elephants in captivity

Environmentalists throw light on threat to valuable Ilmenite deposit and elephants in captivity

Written by Bella Dalima

21 Sep, 2014 | 9:04 pm

Environmentalist allege that an ilmenite deposit worth millions is at stake as a result of the Yan-Oya Reservoir Project.

This situation was revealed during the second Annual General Meeting of the Federation of Environmental Organisations of Sri Lanka took place in Colombo.

The Federation of Environmental Organisation acts as an umbrella organisation for Environmental Organisations and Associations in Sri Lanka.

The Yan-Oya Reservoir Project, proposed by the Ministry of Irrigation and Water resources Management was discussed at the AGM held on Saturday.

President of FEOSL, Rukshan Jayewardene expressed these views;
[quote]Irrigation Department should be doing the irrigation design but for the first time in this country from what I understand, the China CMAC Engineering Corporation is doing the irrigation design. They are also doing the EIA report which is like ‘Horage Ammagen Pena Ahanawa‘. And the contractor is also the same engineering corporation.

Why they designed the project is questionable, when we have an absolutely competent irrigation department, one of the most professional departments functioning in this country. Primary Ilmenite deposit is down-stream of Yan-Oya, actually on the northern bank or the left bank of the Yan Oya at its mouth at Pulmuttai.

The mineral beach deposit is valued at Rs.7 million. GSMB ( Geological Survey and Mines Bureau) has not objected to the Yan-Oya Project. They should have looked at how it impacts mineral depostis and mineral resources[/quote]

Another highlight of the AGM was the launch of the Captive Elephant Database which enables the FEOSL to keep a track on captive elephants in the country.

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