SRI LANKA: First policy roundtable on marine litter prevention in Sri Lanka

22/01/2022

The first policy roundtable on marine litter prevention was conducted in Sri Lanka by adelphi Germany in collaboration with NCPC, Sri Lanka on the 21st of January, 2022. The main purpose of this policy roundtable is to identify and define the challenges for prevention of marine litter in Sri Lanka.

A total of 26 participants from government, including Marine Environment Protection Authority (MEPA), Ministry of Environment (MoE), Central Environmental Authority (CEA), Coast Conservation and Coastal Resource Management Department and National Aquatic Resources Research and Development Agency (NARA), academia, NGOs, international development organizations and tourism industry associations were presented in this event. First, Mr. Gamini Gunasekera, the Chairman of NCPC Sri Lanka welcomed the audience for the policy roundtable. Mr. Thorsten Bargfrede, Deputy Head of Mission for Delegation of the European Union to Sri Lanka and Maldives delivered the keynote speech emphasizing the importance of marine litter prevention in the Asian region. Mr. Amarnath Munnolimath, Senior Project Manager, adelphi from Germany participated as the main resource person in the first policy roundtable while Mr. Samantha Kumarasena, CEO of NCPC Sri Lanka delivered the policy insights for Sri Lanka marine litter prevention.

The participants were organized into 4 groups and given following tasks;

  • Identification of challenges in preventing waste flowing into water bodies/oceans (Gaps in existing policies)
  • Understanding the Challenge (elaborating the challenge)
  • Actor & System Mapping and
  • Identification of potential solutions for prevention of marine litter in Sri Lanka

The participants were very active in group works and following points were identified as the major challenges;

  • Lack of policy monitoring and evaluation
  • Alack of awareness and skill development
  • Lack of EPR mechanism and
  • Lack of coordination between stakeholders in waste management.

The next policy roundtable will be organized in Sri Lanka in June, 2022 with the same participants in order to prototype solutions for above challenges.