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Cleanliness a Concern for a Major Lake in Colombo

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The Beira Lake located prominently in Colombo City is a body of water well known to the city’s residents and other Sri Lankans. Close to this lake are many high-rise buildings and construction projects. The pollution levels of the green waters of Beira Lake are also known to be significantly high. There have been those who have complained about the odour arising from this lake. Considering this, a Right to Information application was sent to the Sri Lanka Land Development Corporation and, early this year, certain information was received.

The reply from the above public authority stated that the SLLDC has been attending to dredging work in East Beira Lake and West Beira Lake “up to required bed level” during last year. Also, the SLLDC expected to carry out the dredging and water quality improvement work in South Beira Lake within this year.

When asked what actions were taken by the Ministry of Megapolis & Western Development / Sri Lanka Land Development Corporation to clean up Beira Lake in the past two years, it was explained that along with the dredging work, the Sri Lanka Land Development Corporation has attended to development on Linear Park around the lake area.

Notably, a plan of action for the cleanup of Beira Lake is mentioned in the below government webpage:

http://www.cabinetoffice.gov.lk/cab/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=16&Itemid=49&lang=en&dID=9862

The RTI application questioned whether this plan was carried out. The reply was that the necessary procurement process had been proceeded with.

It was also asked of the SLLDC, what measures were taken to ensure that the construction materials and procedures and also the waste from the apartments and other buildings surrounding Beira Lake are not allowed to adversely affect Beira Lake and any of the organisms living in it. To this, however, the Sri Lanka Land Development Corporation answered that they are responsible for carrying out the maintenance activities in this water body and that also, Linear Park comes under the purview of the UDA; it was stated that SLLDC has no authority to control any waste discharge on the surrounding ground area.

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