Welcome clarification on fuel
The public is certain to heave a
huge, collective sigh of relief on learning that the State never
intended to restrict the supply of fuel to the country’s
consumers. Earlier, some sections of the media gave wide
publicity to a rumour that fuel rationing was on the cards.
Naturally, this piece of misinformation would have generated
considerable alarm in the minds of the public because the lot of
the people is already unbearable from the viewpoint of living
Fuel restrictions would only aggravate this cost of living
crisis by rendering most consumer items well out of reach of the
Therefore, the scotching of the fuel ration rumour by the
State is most timely and hugely welcome.
However, considering the tremendous volatility of world oil
prices, the Government may be compelled to revise present oil
prices, for, the financial viability of State institutions, such
as the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation and the rising recurrent
expenditure of the State, need to be strongly considered.
However, here too we caution maximum restraint because of the
unbearability of the cost of living burden. Every effort must be
made by the State to lighten this burden and it is for this
reason that we welcome the State’s denial of the fuel ration
Equally relieving is the news that the State is exploring the
possibility of introducing alternative energy sources to
alleviate the oil burden. This is a long overdue venture and we
hope it would meet with hundred percent success.
The news is that a Cabinet Sub Committee proposal to look
into the possibility of processing oil from material such as
plastic, polythene and tyres, has met with Cabinet approval and
we hope the search for alternative sources of energy would get
underway in earnest. Likewise, the search for oil in Sri Lanka
must be quickened.
Considering the unbearable consequences of high oil prices,
we hope this search would be conducted enthusiastically and
systematically. Nothing should be left to chance nor should
those assigned this task allow themselves to fall victim to the
habitual lassitude and atrophy observable in many a public
We call for a swift, energetic and sustained search for these
alternative sources of energy as well as oil in Sri Lanka.
Meanwhile, we wonder what has become of Sri Lanka’s
on-and-off desire to go in for alternative power sources, such
as solar, wind and ocean energy, which on many occasions was
deliberated on and even took the form of concrete proposals?
It is all too evident, that we are bent on taking what we
consider is the easy way out - that is, depend on oil imports
with all its unpleasant consequences.
We cannot afford to adopt this laid back approach to meeting
our power and energy needs. We need a new mindset and attitude
and we hope these changes are forthcoming.