25th January 2012, www.dailynews.lk, By Disna Mudalige
A special beach nourishment project to recreate the coastline has been introduced by the Coast Conservation Department (CCD) for the first time in Sri Lanka to combat coastal erosion, CCD Deputy Director (Planning) Gamini Hewage told the Daily News..
He noted that a one km coastal stretch from Palliyawatte to Uswetakeyyawa had initially been selected to carry out this project.
Under this project, sand pumped from the deep sea will be used to fill the coastline recreating the beach. This is done using a sand pump vessel.
He said that breakwaters would also be constructed to prevent the sand from been washed back in to the sea.
Hewage said that Rs 270 million has been allocated for this project. The work of coastal stretch from Palliyawatte to Uswettakeyyawa is to be completed within this year. He said that this coastal stretch had been selected considering the accelerated coastal erosion experienced in the area..
He stated that under the first phase, half of the distance of the selected coastal stretch would be completed.
He noted that a foreign company has been contracted for this project, under the supervision and coordination of the Department. The project has been launched under the direction of Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa.
Hewage said that as the Coast Conservation Department expects to extend this project to a four kilo metre coastal stretch in Marawila where the next highest rate of coastal erosion has been reported.
He observed that the beach nourishment work in Marawila would be commenced within this year.
He observed that the tourism industry and coastal residents have been affected by sea erosion over the past years, adding that the new project would provide a satisfactory solution to the problem.