Commando four-wheel rally upsets environmentalists but Army is gung-ho A four-wheel-drive motor rally organised along east coast early next month has raised concerns among environmentalists. Commando 4×4, the six-day rally planned to start on August 4, is being organised by the Commando Regiment under its “Experience Sri Lanka with Commandos” project. The rally will start from Point Pedro in Jaffna, ending at the Commando Regiment Training school at Uva ...

Young Lankan scientist makes life-saving snakebite discovery A landmark discovery by a Sri Lankan scientist could save thousands of lives lost through snakebite the world over. A snakebite victim’s life often hangs in the balance in the minutes during which doctors watch for symptoms of poisoning before injecting the person with anti-venom as the remedy itself could cause severe allergic reactions that can cause immediate death. Not every snakebite ...

Beaming in from space on ‘silent killer’ drought Lanka to benefit from Indo-Chinese satellite aid  Sri Lanka has been selected as the first regional country along with Cambodia to benefit from space technology in early predictions of drought – and political rivals India and China are co-operating with the United Nations to develop the mechanism. News of the initiative came from a two-day forum on Space Technology Applications ...

Lanka pinpointed as winner if reefs conserved An Acropora coral about 6 inches regrowing on Artificial Concrete Coral Structure (c) Arjan Rajasuriya Stronger storms, rising seas and flooding are placing hundreds of millions of people at risk around the world – in Sri Lanka and other countries a major part of the solution lies off-shore, according to a new study that finds coral reefs reduce wave energy ...

Captive elephants helpless against TB spread Experts fear there could be an outbreak of tuberculosis among captive elephants if quick action is not taken.As elephants in Dehiwala Zoo show signs of TB the zoo authorities have stopped the popular elephant performances.Zoo director Anura de Silva told The Sunday Times that five out of the zoo’s 10 elephants have tested positive in a preliminary TB anti-body test ...

All in the family Ajantha Palihawadana’s new Orchid varieties are named after his wife and children Walking into his garden in early January to start watering his collection of orchids, breeder and researcher Ajantha Palihawadana noticed some flowers that looked different amidst the Dendrobiums. He quickly checked the plant tag and referred his hybridisation notes to realise that the flowering plant was a ...

WATER – A forgotten lifeline of Avurudu Today, is the traditional New Year of Sri Lanka (celebrated mainly by Sinhalese and Tamils – hence’ Aluth Avurudu’ as it called in Sinhala). Except for the song of the Koel – all the other Nature’s symbols of Avurudu including the crimson blossoms of Erabadu, ripen Kadju Puhulam, Olinda and Panchi games are now getting a rare sight. Likewise traditions related ...

Experts warn: Avert conflicts over water-energy-food nexus Water for food is a core issue that can no longer be tackled through a narrow sectorial approach, a major international conference held in Colombo last week was told. Nearly 500 experts from 40 countries participated in the three-day Fifth International Conference on Water Resources and Hydropower Development in Asia at the BMICH. Addressing the summit, senior minister Dr.Sarath Amunugama said native ...

Instead of Erabadu; Pink Trumpet unfolds petals for New Year Erabudu is the flower of the Avurudu season but you will hardly be able to find erabadu these days. Instead, rosy trumpet (tabebuia) flowers bloom, marking the onset of the New Year season. (photos by Susantha Udagedara)  This is the famous sakura flower season in Japan with thousands of cherry trees in full bloom. The cherry trees shed their leaves in ...

Garden lizard gains an elite relative from Knuckles Pethiyagoda’s Crestless Lizard – Calotes pethiyagodai (c) Vimukthi Weeratunga  The The common green garden lizard that belongs to the Agamid lizard family this week gained a new relative that brings to 19 the number of spcies in this group, 16 of them endemic to Sri Lanka. new addition is been a result of strenuous scientific analysis under difficult conditions by ...

Off to Kumamoto to see Japan’s famed cherry blossoms “The Sakura flower is extremely beautiful, but its splendour does not last long. A few days after blossoming, the flower starts to disintegrate, reminding us of the uncertainty of life,” said Nobuko, my Japanese colleague explaining how the Japanese view the cherry blossom season. The Sakura’s bloom marks the arrival of spring, as the trees bloom only when climatic conditions ...

Little water for Hydropower, Irrigation and Drinking; CEB pleads deities for rain Country to experience rice shortage by August, and Water Board asks people to use tap water carefully. Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB)’s cost of power generation escalates high as the contribution from hydroelectricity drops around 11%. In this aftermath, the country’s Minister of Power decided to turn to the deities pleading for rain which is long over-due.  The percentage of expensive ...

UN warns water energy needs coming to crunch- point By Malaka Rodrigo in Tokyo the United Nations predicting that the world will need 40 per cent more water and 50 per cent more energy some 15 years from now, World Water Day’s theme of “Water and Energy” Friday was right on target, very much so for Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka is hoping to increase its reliance on hydro-power but ...

World Water Day – Day04 (Kumamoto City) Kumamoto City council arranged a field visit to see how they utilize the ground water resources. The attractions of the Kumamoto Prefecture including the Kumamoto castle and mount Aso which is one of the largest active volcano of the world has been visited. At the Shirakawa Fountain head; we found cleanest water that was so refreshing. The Sakura trees in Kumamoto ...

World Water Day – Day03 (Kumamoto City) On the 3rd day, the Kumamoto City invited some of us to participate the Water Forum they organized to mark the World Water Day. Kumamoto City has won  last year’s ‘Water for Life’ award for sustainable use of its ground water – first time, a city has bagged this prestigious water award. The city is totally depend on ground water sources and the ...

World Water Day – Day02 On the 2nd day, the official event to commemorate the World Water Day 2014 were held at UN University Conference Hall. The morning session include general speeches about the World Water Day 2014 and its theme “Water and Energy Nexus”. The occasion is also marked with the launch of World Water Development Report 2014 and presenting the ‘Water for Life’ ...

Untitled Post The theme of the World Water Day (22nd of March) this year is ‘Water and Energy’. With the aim of raising awareness on the subject, a 2 day workshop has been organized inline with World Water Day (WWD) official celebrations that is being held in Tokyo, Japan. The following has been captured during this WWD workshop.

War for water in Kithulgala Rafters protest hydro project that dams their livelihood  Kithulgala is Sri Lanka’s premier white-water rafting location but a hydro-power project threatens the future of this tourist attraction. The Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) is building the Broadland Hydropower Project on the Kelani River as a run-of-river (ROR) type power plant. ROR plants need little or no water storage but under this ...

Provinces get their own butterflies Everybody loves a butterfly and perhaps Sri Lankans more than most: four years after the Sri Lanka Birdwing was declared the national butterfly each of the nine provinces are to get their own butterfly. The nine are considered flagship species due to their attractive colour patterns and have been selected because they are endemic to Sri Lanka, charismatic and readily ...

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