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* Environmentalists concerned over road being constructed through Sri Lanka's World Heritage rain forest
Sat, Sep 10, 2011, 10:53 am SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Sept 10, Colombo: Environmentalists of Sri Lanka say that the government has taken steps to construct a road across the World Heritage Sinharaja rain forest ignoring the concerns raised by the environmentalists.

On September 09, around 300 people were deployed to clear the jungle for three kilometers to build the road, the sources say.

The road is being built to Suriyakanda from Ilumbakanda in Kalawana. The environmentalists say that an alternative road can be used without building a new road.

They point out that the new road damages the flora and fauna, risks the wildlife and unnecessarily exposes the World Heritage rain forest.

Sinharaja was designated a World Biosphere Reserve in 1978 and a World Heritage Site in 1988.

The reserve is only 21 km (13 mi) from east to west, and a maximum of 7 km (4.3 mi) from north to south, but it is a treasure trove of endemic species, including trees, insects, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals.



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