N’Eliya DS rejects request to fell 3,700 treesView(s):
At a meeting of the Environment Committee of Nuwara Eliya DS held recently Helen Meegasmulla, the District Secretary turned down a request by five plantation companies to cut down 3,700 trees in their respective plantations.
Earlier the Divisional secretaries of Nuwara Eliya and Ambagamuwa, the Central Environmental Authority and the Plantation Ministry had approved a request from the companies to cut down the trees, pending approval of the District Secretary.
Rejecting the request, Ms Meegasmulla told the meeting that it was not possible to grant permits to cut down so many trees located in an environmentally sensitive area. She said the companies would have to revert to the Ministry for the necessary permission.
The DS stressed that Divisional Secretaries should have taken into consideration the drinking water problems faced by people in the areas concerned before they agreed to the felling of the trees.
She pointed out that even the President of the country had taken a serious note of environmental damage caused by the felling of trees.
Representatives of the companies claim since re-plantation had been completed more timber was needed for fuelling furnaces of tea factories. They also claim the trees could pose a threat to electric wires.
|Unsightly stumpsStumps of old cypress trees in Nuwara Eliya have been an eyesore in the scenic Nuwara Eliya town which is visited by tens of thousands of local and foreign tourists. |
While the government’s aim is to promote Nuwara Eliya town as a ‘green city’, some of these stumps of trees that are over 160 years old could pose a danger to the life and limb of people visiting the area.