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CEA Urges Citizens to Avoid Polythene and Plastic for Vesak Decorations to Protect Environment

May 18, Colombo (LNW): The Central Environmental Authority (CEA) has called on all citizens to refrain from using polythene papers and plastic covers for Vesak decorations, including lanterns, pandals, banners, and posters, to mitigate environmental harm. The CEA’s request comes in light of the significant negative impact these materials have on the environment, rivers, lakes, and other waterways.

A recent CEA survey revealed that over seven million tons of non-degradable polythene and plastics flow through rivers, waterways, and streams, ultimately reaching the ocean. This pollution severely affects marine life, including crucial fish populations.

CEA Chairman Venura Fernando emphasized the public’s responsibility to avoid non-degradable materials for Vesak decorations. He pointed out that a variety of degradable raw materials, readily available in the country, can be used instead. These materials can be recycled or safely burned after use, unlike non-degradable polythene and plastics, which persist in the environment for thousands of years, causing extensive harm to fauna and flora.

Additionally, the government has issued a special gazette notification prohibiting the use of polythene and plastics for political, social, and cultural events, reinforcing the CEA’s appeal. Chairman Fernando urged the public to consider the long-term environmental impact and opt for sustainable, eco-friendly alternatives for their Vesak celebrations.

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