Lanka's Corals Endangered Due To Climate Change


Sri Lanka’s corals are faced with an imminent threat of destruction due to climate change, pollution and illegal fishing methods, Marine Environment Protection Authority (MEPA) General Manager Dr. Terney Pradeep Kumara said.

Observing that 90 percent of corals in Sri Lankan waters are already dead, he warned that the remaining 10 percent would also be lost in another 10 years.“Sri Lankans will lose the luxury of viewing colourful corals 10 years from now if urgent steps are not taken to stop their current rate of destruction,” he said. He was speaking at a media workshop on ‘Conservation of Corals and Marine Environment’ organized by the MEPA in Trincomalee parallel to World Ocean Day which fell on June 8.

“The percentage of live corals in Hikkaduwa is about 7 percent. The Bar reef in Kalpitiya has suffered a severe coral bleaching event. In shallow waters down South, you can only see coral rubble now. Illegal fishing methods such as dynamiting have destroyed corals in Silavathura. Some patches of corals still remain in the Eastern waters such as in Pigeon Islands in Trincomalee, the newly gazetted Kayankerni Marine Sanctuary and Pasikuda. The pressure on these corals is also very high due to human activities such as tourism, discharge of industrial effluent, agriculture, aquaculture, discharge of municipal sewerage and squatter settlements. We need a collective national effort to protect the remaining live coral patches,” he explained.

Dr. Pradeep Kumara, illustrating a series of examples of marine pollution, stressed that plastic and polythene waste poses a great threat to marine environment. “We need an attitudinal change to restrict our plastic and polythene consumption.


Source: MSN