Economics of Utilization of Fly Ash Originating From the Coal Power Plant, Norochcholai

B.R. Jayasekara and U.A.D.P. Gunawardena
Department of Forestry and Environmental Science, University of Sri Jayewardenepura , Sri Lanka

A new type of a solid waste which is known as fly ash will be available in Sri Lanka at the end of year 2010 due to operations of the Coal power plant, Norochcholai. Fly ash is a superfine, powdery byproduct which is carried away from the power plant boiler in the flue gas during coal combustion. It is expected to generate 70,000 tons of fly ash annually from the coal power plant. The objective of the study was to investigate the potential for effective utilization of fly ash originated from the Coal power plant while minimizing the environmental and social impacts.

The methodology of the study involved three surveys; an expert opinion survey to identify environmental impacts of fly ash and potential utilization opportunities of fly ash; an industrial survey to investigate willingness of industries to utilize fly ash and a contingent valuation survey to estimate the potential damage cost to the surrounding communities. In order to find out the best uses of fly ash financial and economic analysis were carried out for each and every industry that have the potential to use fly ash.

The expert opinion survey indicated that only the fine portion of fly ash (20%) is usable for cement production and the rest could be used for industries such as ready mix concrete, asbestos cement sheets, dam and road construction and cement based products such as light weight concrete blocks, clay-fly ash bricks, etc. The main impacts of land filling of fly ash include contamination of soils and water especially due to highly alkaline leachate.

The financial analysis of fly ash utilization indicates that asbestos cement industry receives highest financial benefit while the lowest were received by cement industries. However the highest economic benefit of fly ash utilization is gained by cement production which is Rs 13,330.35 per ton. Total cost of land filling of fly ash (per ton) is estimated as Rs 228,721.72 and therefore the full utilization of fly ash is very important while avoiding land filling.

In conclusion, the best practice to handle fly ash originating from the coal power plant is to utilize the ash in order gain the highest economic benefits to the country. This is very important because the fly ash storage capacities in the power plant are only enough for two days.

Effects of abiotic environmental factors on fish yield from traditional stilt fishery in Southern Sri Lanka

M.C.L. Zoysa and U.P.K. Epa

Stilt fishing is one of the traditional methods practiced in shallow water only in Southern coastal belt of Sri Lanka. Fishing is done with a rod and line while sitting on a cross bar tied to a wooden pole driven into the coral reef. This method of fishing has existed for more than 50 years. The fishing starts when the fish return to the reef during the day time. This study was carried out to investigate the relationships between fish yield of the stilt fishery and the abiotic environmental factors in the fishing area.

Study was carried out from November 2007 to June 2008. Three fishing sites were selected at Kubalgama, Talpe and Goviyapana in the Southern coastal belt of Sri Lanka. The selected sites were weekly visited for data collection. The fish catch and effort data were recorded and catch per unit effort (CPUE) was calculated for each sampling site. Daily tidal variation was recorded using a tide pole and the rainfall data was obtained from Meteorological Department. The phases of the moon on the sampling dates were also recorded.

Only two species of fish, Blue line herrings (Herklotsichthys quadrimaculatus; Clupeidae) and Big eyed scads (Selar crumenopthalmus; Carangidae) were caught at all the sites. The catch per unit effort among three sites was significantly different (p> 0.05) with a range from 0.44 – 1.26. Fish yield did not relate to the tidal variation in all the sites. Fish catch linearly increased with the lunar phase (r² = 0.81) in the first three quarters. Comparatively low fish catches were recorded during the fourth quarter than the third quarter of the lunar phase. There was a significant (r² = 0.93) positive linear relationship between CPUE with rainfall in stilt fishing. According to the results lunar phase and rainfall may have affected the fish migration towards the reef area as such affecting the yield of H. quadrimaculatus and S. crumenopthalmus in the shallow coastal waters in Southern Sri Lanka.

 M.C.L. Zoysa1and U.P.K. Epa2

1National Institute of Fisheries and Nautical Engineering, Sri Lanka 2Department of Zoology, University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka

Estimation of ecological footprint for Madurawala Divisional Secretariat area, Kaluthara District

W.D. Sepalika and U.A.D.P. Gunawardena

The Ecological Footprint calculates the combined demand for ecological resources and presents them as the global average area needed to support a specific human activity. This quantity is expressed in units of global hectares. Present resource utilization expressed by such indicators will be helpful to recognize the future trends. Main objective of the study is to calculate Ecological Footprint per person in the Madurawala Divisional Secretariat area under four major land-use types which are crop land, carbon uptake land, forest land and built up land. In addition, it was intended to estimate the relationship between the socioeconomic parameters of the community and the footprint.

Madurawala Divisional Secretariat area in the Kaluthara district was selected for the study. Stratified random sampling method was used based on the income level of the households. To collect primary data, two surveys were carried out. First survey involved collecting data using a diary kept at the households to obtain actual daily consumption data on food consumption, electricity consumption and traveling data. The diaries were distributed among 50 households and were recollected after a month. The second survey involved a questionnaire survey of 49 households focusing on the same consumption data and forest product consumption and built up area data. In addition, secondary data were collected from various sources.

The comparison of data obtained from diaries and questionnaires prove that there is no significant difference between the two data collection methods according to the Mann- Whitney test. So both samples were considered as a single data set.

All consumption data values were converted into hectares by dividing from the national yield. The resultant hectare values were converted into global hectares (gha) by multiplying the yield factors and equivalence factors for each criterion.

The estimated footprint per person for cropland for food items is 0.21 gha and 0.15 gha for carbon uptake lands. The forest land Ecological Footprint is 0.01 gha and footprint for built up land is 3.07 × 10 -4. The total Ecological Footprint value for all categories is 0.37 gha per person.

According to the results of the multiple regressions analysis total Ecological Footprint has positive relationship with the income, age and the education level of the decision maker in the household. There is negative relationship with the number of members in the household.

The figures of Ecological Footprint are rather low compared to the estimates available worldwide. However, the estimates are for a rural area with low resource consumption and estimates for more  urban areas would be necessary to provide an indication of the overall trend of resource consumption of the country.

W.D. Sepalika and U.A.D.P. Gunawardena
Department of Forestry and Environmental Science, University of Sri Jayewardenepura Sri Lanka

Utilization of molluscs as a food resource among traditional communities in Kalpitiya Region (KR) of Sri Lanka

T. Siriwardana

The present ethnography of fishing communities can be divided as; Deep sea fishing and Littoral – lagoonal fishing. Over the recent decades, the number of coastal zone users increased considerably and so has the nature of demands. The latter include the exploitation of resources found in the zone. Studying current uses of marine and brackish water mollusc resource has two prime values. First is, as it is depicting the periods in history and changes of the shell utilizing pattern. The second is recording recent trends for future studies. Currently the shell resource is drastically running out due to escalating use. Therefore research on fishing culture and utilization of molluscs is important to the future archaeomalacological studies, which is largely untouched by the Sri Lankan researchers. Present research partially fills this void by examining the exploitation of marine and brackish water gastropod and bivalve molluscs in archaeological and ethnographical contexts for the better understanding of the relation between man and molluscs. The research is focused on traditional cultural-economical uses, specially the food economy.

From the edible marine organisms, molluscs fill a considerable amount of sea food consumed by man. Two major classes of them, i.e. bivalves and gastropods are utilized to meet this demand. One main locality was examined here, i.e. Kalpitiya Ânavâsala (KA) in North West coast of Sri Lanka. Shell samples were collected from the kitchen middens in the selected region, participant observation and interviews were made with locals. Total shell sample was measured and recorded. Results.

Thirteen main edible species were identified from the kitchen middens of KA. From them three types can be found largely in the middens, i.e. Pugilina cochlidium, Paphia sp., Gafrarium tumidum. The other species are very scarce in the middens, but that does not indicate their dietary importance is minor. The main point is that the gatherers collect all species which they know as edible. The said
abundant species are higher in total biomass and easy to collect. Except Turbinella pyrum, Murex ramosas and Lambis chiragra, others are collected mainly from their usual habitats such as sandy bottoms, intertidal flats, subtidal flats and on muddy sand flats seaward from mangrove forests. The rate of the utilization pattern, when it was analyzed with the composition of kitchen middens of the studying area ca. 70% of kitchen middens are comprised with the shells of bivalves (9 middens) and ca. 30% (4 middens) with gastropod shells. In the west coast mollusc collecting is started in April and prevails for six months, which is the active period of high sea (vârakan) of south west monsoon. In the diet of the locals shell fish play many roles as a staple food, subsidiary foods, snacks, and an alternative food source when other subsistence strategies fail. Traditionally maritime communities have their own
terminology not only for the various species but also for collecting, shucking and cooking methods.

Utilization of marine and brackish water molluscs in certain traditional maritime cultures is a vertical process of cultural transmission (generational transmission through time). The horizontal process or the cultural exchange across space can be seen through history and society. Hence the use of marine molluscs as a food resource is significant in socio – economic studies of both archaeological and
environmental approaches.

T. Siriwardana
Department of Archaeology, University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka.

Economic value of mangrove ecosystems in the Panama village, Ampara district:a case study

K. Wijayaweera1, S.P.N. Perera2 and V.A.P. Samarawickrama3

Sri Lanka encompasses a high diversity of coastal vegetation, specifically mangroves and these ecosystems have provided a wide array of goods and services, ranging from fishery, forest products and tourism to shoreline protection. The need to assess the economic value of mangroves became more eminent to assist policy-makers and funding agencies in integrating mangrove restoration activities in environmental conservation programs. The study was initiated to estimate the direct and indirect values of mangrove ecosystems and the protection role played at extreme disastrous events such as Tsunami to the coastal communities in Ampara District of Sri Lanka. Information on eco-physical and socioeconomic including various damage costs and dependency on mangrove ecosystems was collected using purposive sampling from 109 households from Panama village which was characterized with well managed and functioning coastal ecosystems where mangroves were relatively intact. The shoreline protection value was assessed by comparing the Panama village with 100 coastal households from villages in Potuvil town where mangrove ecosystem was comparatively degraded due to tsunami. The results revealed a higher mangrove dependence of the Panama villagers with a value of Rs.119, 438/household/year (US$1,171). It was also revealed that estimated incidence of damage costs in areas with degraded mangrove vegetation was significantly greater during the tsunami. The costs of damages to livelihood and property in Potuvil (US$ 13,509) were approximately twenty times the costs of damages in Panama (US$ 623). Field observation also revealed massive destruction to the coastal ecosystem (property and vegetation damages and sea erosion) in Potuvil compared to Panama. Results clearly indicated that areas with intact mangrove ecosystem generate greater economic benefits. The findings also indicate the economic rationale of including mangrove restoration efforts in the environmental conservation programs.

K. Wijayaweera1, S.P.N. Perera2 and V.A.P. Samarawickrama3

1Post Graduate Institute of Agriculture, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka
2Department of Crop Science, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka
3Department of Zoology, The Open University of Sri Lanka.

Socio-economic factors affecting the technology adoption level of sugarcane in rainfed sector in Sevenagala

T.D.G.J. Peiris, N.R.Abeynayake and M.S. Perera

Sugarcane (Saccharum spp) is an important commercial crop cultivated in Sri Lanka over an area of 18,500 hectors. At present domestic sugar production is 56,000 tones per annum, which was sufficient to meet only 9% of the local requirement. The national average yield is 55 tones per hectare. The potential yield is more than two times of that. Non adoption of the technologies was considered as the one of the major reasons for this yield gap. Thus the objective of this study was to find out the technology adaptive level and the socio-economic factors which affect the technology adoption level. The study was conducted in rainfed sector in Sevenagala sugar industry from April to May in 2009. The farmer survey was conducted with 50 farmers which cover a population of approximately 1000 farmers in 3 divisions. Recommended Technology Adoption Index (RTAI) was developed using the scores obtained from the extension officers for twenty two technologies according to the contribution for increment of yield and adoption level of farms using five rating point likert scale (strongly adopt, adopt, poor adopt, very poor adopt, and not adopt). RATI can be used as an indicator of technology adoption levels of each farmer. The correlation between RTAI and yield was 62.26%. Average technology adoption index of study area was 0.7213 with minimum 0.46 and maximum of 0.89. Empirical model was developed to see the relationship between the recommended technology adoption and ten independent variables namely age, monthly income, education, experience, family labour involvement, farmers’ visit of extension office, member of social association, farmer group meetings, frequency of field visit of extension officer, information obtained through the leaflet. Ordered Logistic Regression technique was used to estimate the coefficient of the model, to which four levels for the dependent variables was derived using the range of values of the RTAI. The results revealed that the adoption of recommended technologies was significantly influenced by the monthly income, being a member of social association and farmers’ visit of extension office. Increment of access for loans and strengthening the extension service is suggested to enhance the technology adoption level of sugarcane cultivation.

T.D.G.J. Peiris, N.R.Abeynayake and M.S. Perera
Wayamba University of Sri Lanka.

Economic valuation of conservation of genetic resources of wild rice relatives : Assessing the preferences of adjacent community for conserving Oryza granulata in the Wavulpane area

R. Dissanayake1, S. Guruge1, M. Udugama1, M.U. Jayasinghe1, U.A.D.P. Gunewardena2
R.P.L.C. Randeni and R.S.S. Rathnayake3

This study was aimed to achieve the specific objective of assessing the preferences of adjacent communities for utilization, benefit sharing and conservation of the genetic resources of Wild Rice Relatives (WRR) in Sri Lanka and to explore the capability of setting the priorities for conservation and management of WRR based on these preferences. The “Wavulpane” village located in the Rathnapura district was selected as the case as: (a) it was reported to be one of the growing areas for the WRR of Oriza granulata, and (b) there were no weedy rice problems prevailing in this village. The “Choice Experiment Models” (CEM) [i.e. stated preference method used to obtain Option Values for non-market goods by exploring the individuals’ stated behavior in a hypothetical setting] were applied. The data were collected from 50 individuals who were well aware of the presence and potential importance of this particular WRR through a Participatory Community Appraisal (PCA) carried out with the support of a structured questionnaire designed specifically for the CEM. Outcome of the Choice Experiment, which used a Fractional Factorial Design to array four attributes and three levels in the choice sets orthogonally, shows that an individual in an adjacent community was Willing-To-Pay nearly Rs. 82 per year for in-situ conservation of WRR. The need of the hour is, therefore, to develop appropriate policy and institutional framework that works for this task to which both short and long term policies as well as stakeholder participation should be guaranteed (i.e. research stations, universities, NGOs).

R. Dissanayake1, S. Guruge1, M. Udugama1, M.U. Jayasinghe1, U.A.D.P. Gunewardena2
R.P.L.C. Randeni and R.S.S. Rathnayake3

1Department of Agribusiness Management, Wayamaba University of Sri Lanka
2Department of Forestry and Environment Science, University of Sri Jayawardenapura Sri Lanka
3Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources of Sri Lanka.

Assessing the preferences of plant breeders for utilization, benefit sharing and priorization of conservation of wild rice relatives in Sri Lanka

S. Guruge1, R. Dissanayake1, M. Udugama1, M.U. Jayasinghe1, U.A.D.P. Gunewardena2, R.P.L.C. Randeni3 and R.S.S. Rathnayake3

The purpose of this study was to assess empirically the preferences of plant breeders for utilization, benefit sharing and conservation of the genetic resources of Wild Rice Relatives (WRR) in Sri Lanka. The “Choice Experiment Models” (CEM), i.e. stated preference method uses to obtain Option Values for non-market goods by exploring the individuals’ stated behavior in a hypothetical setting, were employed with the primary data collected from a panel of reputed plant breeders (n = 30) work at the administrative capacity in various reputed academic and research institutions in Sri Lanka. The data collection process was characterized by a face-to-face interview with each breeder during March to May 2009, which was supported by a structured questionnaire designed specifically for the CEM. The outcome of analysis shows that, from the breeders’ point of view, the benefit for an individual, in general, for conserving WRR for the future is nearly Rs. 10. Given the facts that there are not much significant direct uses of WRR revealed to date; there exists yet unrevealed benefits to the society (e.g. use of favorable genes in WRR to improve the quality of cultivated rice varieties), and the outcome of previous studies divulge that the gene sequence of different WRR populations belong to different geographical area varies significantly, the option value derived through this analysis implies that conservation of WRR can be done in-situ effectively, if people reside close to the areas where they are growing predominately would like to contribute more than the value that the scientists expected. The results highlight the importance of carrying out extensive economic research program focusing of the people adjacent to the areas where WRR growing to estimate such values as so would facilitate setting up alternative institutional arrangements (i.e. public / private) work for effective conservation of CWR, in general, and WRR, in particular.

Community dependency on sand dunes for household income: Evidence from two coastal villages in Pottuvil

P. Sivarajah and M. Anas

The eastern coast of Sri Lanka contains the longest stretch of sand dunes in the country. The Pottuvil sand dunes are a part of the sand dune series which extends from Pottuvil to Panama seashore. Sand dunes were excessively mined for commercial purposes in Pottuvil, both for sand and turtle egg poaching. The main purpose of this study was to determine the economic dependency of the community on the sand dunes.

Through a survey using structured questionnaires for personal interviews, data on coastal community dependence on the coastal resources and income gained were collected. A multi-stage random sampling method was used, and 45 people were selected from two coastal villages of Pottuvil. The income dependency level of the community was analyzed through a linear regression model (double Log model).

The average family size was 5 persons, with about 68.9% of the respondents involved in fishing for their livelihood. 57.8% of respondents had been educated above the secondary level. Around 84.5% of the families were recipients of Samurdhi benefits. The families earned an average of Rs.6,746.7 per month from fishing and coastal resources exploitation. The linear regression results indicated that there was a significant relationship between total income of households and income from exploiting coastal resources (sand mining and turtle egg poaching). Although 95.5% of respondents had good knowledge about the importance of the coastal resources and its’ conservation, only 20% had the view that these resources were deteriorating over time due to exploitation. Results also indicated that about 86.5% of the respondents shared an optimistic behaviour to adopt environment friendly attitudes towards coastal resource conservation.

Coastal community seemed to have a more positive attitude towards the coastal resources, but was ignorant of conservation issues or impact of their actions on the environment. Hence, there is an urgent need to create awareness among the community for adopting participatory conservation activities to sustain the coastal resources.

P. Sivarajah and M. Anas

Department of Agricultural Economics Faculty of Agriculture Eastern University, Sri Lanka.

Evaluation of Socio-Economic status among estate workers in plantation sector

Tea, Rubber and coconut are the main commercial crops in Sri Lanka. Other than state owned plantations; regional plantation companies (RPCs), small holders and home gardens significantly contribute for the total production of them.

Through contributing significantly to the national economy, the socio-economic status of estate workers is not satisfactory. The objective of this study is to evaluate the socio-economic status among them. For this purpose data collection was done in 52 estates; both from up country and low country. These 52 estates belonged to Four Regional Plantation Companies. A pre-tested questionnaire was distributed randomly among workers in each estate.

417 respondents were interviewed in this survey. The respondents were selected to cover all social classes in an estate. General information like age, number of residents in household and social information like type of house, education level, sanitary facilities, water availability and infrastructure facilities were obtained. As economic information employment of the respondents were obtained.

According to the obtained results most of the families have 4-8 family members. 87 % percent of the total respondents live in the estate itself and the other 13 % are villagers and outsiders who are engaged in an occupation in the estate. These 13 % mainly consist of estate doctors, mid-wives, managers, SDs, field officers and clerks. 86% of the estate dwellers live in line rooms and the remaining 14 % were in twin-cottages, housing schemes or quarters. Among the estate dwellers less than 5 % had an education up to G.C.E. (O/L). Almost all respondents have sanitary facilities most of which are common and a source of water. However, water is not available to individual housing units and it is revealed that in some estates it is hard to find water in dry periods.

According to the survey access to schools, hospitals and towns is the most critical issue faced by the estate workers; due to long distance to travel and poor condition of roads. Some residents have have to walk 24 kms to reach a bus. The hiring of a three-wheeler cost from 60.00 to 1,200.00 Rs to travel to the nearest town. It was observed that the three-wheeler hire is a good indicator of the road condition and the distance to travel.

However, it was observed that drug addiction, ignorance due to lack of proper education, poverty and wastage are the acute social issues of the estate workers. On the other hand estate unions, drug addiction, poverty and lack of labourers are the main obstacles faced by the estate management.

Key Words: socio-economic, estate sector, estate workers, plantation sector
Jayarathne, K.M.T.S, Amarasena, P.R.S.K, Bandara, N.J.G.J.
Department of Forestry and Environmental Science, University of Sri Jayewardanepura