Colombo (LNW): Senior Adviser to the President on National Security and Chief of the Presidential Staff Sagala Ratnayake officially launched a programme today (12) aimed at reducing the environmental damage caused to the coast of Sri Lanka by the distressed X-Press Pearl vessel which caught fire.
The programme jointly implemented by the Marine Environment Protection Authority, Department of Coast Conservation, Ministry of Provincial Councils and Local Government, Central Environmental Authority, Environmental Police, Sri Lanka Navy, and Tudawe Brother Pvt. Ltd. also involves using machinery to remove the garbage from the affected coast, and the launch took place at Crow-Island beach in Mattakkuliya.
Expressing his views on this occasion, Ratnayake stressed that Sri Lanka attracts tourists because of its beautiful beaches, environment, and cultural heritage. Therefore, it is everyone’s responsibility to contribute to the tourism industry by protecting the coast as well as protecting the environment for the next generation, he emphasised.
Ratnayake added that intends to continue implementing this coastal conservation programme in a sustainable manner and that he anticipates receiving support from non-governmental organisations and resource persons in doing so.
The event was attended by Navy Commander Vice Admiral Priyantha Perera, Chairman of the Marine Environment Protection Authority Asela B. Rekawa, Chairman of the Clean Ocean Force Organisation Jerome Fernando, and other officials.