Agriculture, Main Cause Of Climate Change

By Paneetha Ameresekere

Colombo is a wetland, and any harm to it has disastrous economic effects, an agronomist said.
Dr Andrew Noble, Senior Fellow, International Water Management Institute, delivering a lecture on ‘biodiversity’ in Colombo on Thursday (May 23) said flooding in Colombo during the rainy season is an example of the consequences that follow when retention lands are encroached and have to make way for urbanization and development.
He said Colombo has no waterways to cause flooding.
The cause is due to encroachment of water retention lands.
Noble also said Sri Lanka’s lagoons, such as the Batticaloa, Chilaw and Negombo lagoons which are a source of livelihood to fishers are being threatened due to encroachment and pollution, whilst also impacting on tourism.
He further said agriculture is the biggest perpetrator of climate change in respect of the emission of greenhouse gases.
“Clearing of land for agriculture creates global warming and biodiversity loss while the addition of nitrogen and phosphorus for soil fertilization upsets the balance of these chemicals in the atmosphere,” Noble said.
He further said the source of drinking water for New York City is the Catskill Mountains. 70% of the mountain is private land.

Pollution had crept in and the authorities demanded the installation of water purification plants costing billions of dollars.
But the city council, by adopting various pollution control methods and septic treatment, averted the need for such costly investments. “Simple solutions vis-à-vis the environment can save billions of dollars,” Noble said.
Environment and Renewable Energy Minister Susil Premajayantha, in his speech said plans are underway to increase Sri Lanka’s forest cover from the current 20-21% to 35% by 2020. To assist in this endeavour, the UN has done a GIS mapping of the island.
In order to prevent environmental damage, the current work in progress vis-à-vis the northern railway line, including the line to Madhu, contractors, in this regard were not permitted to obtain the required aggregates from the area.
Premajayantha, a former Power and Energy Minister further said the annual demand for power increases at a pace of 8%. He said when the rains come on time; hydro power can meet 40% of the island’s power requirement. He was thankful for the Mahaweli complex built during the J.R. Jayewardene era, for this state of affairs.
“If not for the Mahaweli, we would have had to try to source 550 mW of power from elsewhere,” Premajayantha said, adding that the cost of a unit of hydro electricity was a mere Rs 2.60. In contrast, a single unit of thermal energy costs between Rs 44-45 a unit.
The Mahaweli project also opened up thousands of acres in the North-Central Province and in the dry zone for paddy cultivation, Premajayantha said.
Last year the rains failed and 80% of the island’s power requirement was met by thermal power. He however admitted that the current power tariff hike, where higher bracket users would be charged at Rs 50 a unit, was going to impact tea factories and the private sector as a whole.
Premajayantha also said that discussions were on with some east European and Singaporean parties to build a US$ 200 million incinerator for non biodegradable waste, where the heat generated would be converted to electricity to supply to the grid. Additionally, a landfill on a 15-acre plot of land was being built at Dompe with KOICA aid. He said Colombo and its suburbs generate 1,300 tonnes of waste daily of which 60% was biodegradable and from which compost fertilizer could be manufactured.
The Kaduwela Pradeshiya Sabha has embarked on a programme to make compost fertilizer from the biodegradable waste produced in the area, Premajayantha said, adding, a polythene recycling plant will be built in Horana.
Himendra Ranaweera of Dilmah, another speaker at this event said post-conflict development work may cause harm to land, which previously remained untouched due to the conflict. He also said that one MDG goal that Sri Lanka might not be able to achieve is environmental sustainability by 2015. The seminar was organized by the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce.

Pollution had crept in and the authorities demanded the installation of water purification plants costing billions of dollars.
But the city council, by adopting various pollution control methods and septic treatment, averted the need for such costly investments.
“Simple solutions vis-à-vis the environment can save billions of dollars,” Noble said.
Environment and Renewable Energy Minister Susil Premajayantha, in his speech said plans are underway to increase Sri Lanka’s forest cover from the current 20-21% to 35% by 2020.
To assist in this endeavour, the UN has done a GIS mapping of the island.
In order to prevent environmental damage, the current work in progress vis-à-vis the northern railway line, including the line to Madhu, contractors, in this regard were not permitted to obtain the required aggregates from the area.
Premajayantha, a former Power and Energy Minister further said the annual demand for power increases at a pace of 8%.
He said when the rains come on time; hydro power can meet 40% of the island’s power requirement. He was thankful for the Mahaweli complex built during the J.R. Jayewardene era, for this state of affairs.
“If not for the Mahaweli, we would have had to try to source 550 mW of power from elsewhere,” Premajayantha said, adding that the cost of a unit of hydro electricity was a mere Rs 2.60. In contrast, a single unit of thermal energy costs between Rs 44-45 a unit.
The Mahaweli project also opened up thousands of acres in the North-Central Province and in the dry zone for paddy cultivation, Premajayantha said.
Last year the rains failed and 80% of the island’s power requirement was met by thermal power. He however admitted that the current power tariff hike, where higher bracket users would be charged at Rs 50 a unit, was going to impact tea factories and the private sector as a whole.
Premajayantha also said that discussions were on with some east European and Singaporean parties to build a US$ 200 million incinerator for non biodegradable waste, where the heat generated would be converted to electricity to supply to the grid.
Additionally, a landfill on a 15-acre plot of land was being built at Dompe with KOICA aid. He said Colombo and its suburbs generate 1,300 tonnes of waste daily of which 60% was biodegradable and from which compost fertilizer could be manufactured.
The Kaduwela Pradeshiya Sabha has embarked on a programme to make compost fertilizer from the biodegradable waste produced in the area, Premajayantha said, adding, a polythene recycling plant will be built in Horana.
Himendra Ranaweera of Dilmah, another speaker at this event said post-conflict development work may cause harm to land, which previously remained untouched due to the conflict. He also said that one MDG goal that Sri Lanka might not be able to achieve is environmental sustainability by 2015.
The seminar was organized by the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce.

Comments are closed

Photo Gallery

Log in | Designed by Gabfire themes

Switch to our mobile site

buy viagra online buy viagra online buy viagra online buy viagra online automated drip feed link building Service drip feed link building Service drip feed link building Service