Palmyrah palms to solve human-elephant conflict
A sustainable solution has been found for the human-elephant conflict
in Sri Lanka by Practical Action, said Practical Action Sri Lanka Team
Leader Ranasinghe Perera, addressing a press conference yesterday at the
Buddhist Cultural Centre, Colombo.
He said that electric fencing was the principal solution for the
human-elephant conflict in Sri Lanka.
Although it has shown positive results it had some limitations such
as high cost of fencing and maintenance. As an alternative to electric
fencing, Practical Action has come up with an innovative, low cost,
sustainable bio-fencing technology to protect elephants and humans.
"It is cultivation of four rows of Palmyrah palms in a zig-zag manner
at the territorial boundaries of elephants or around wild elephant
The technology is based on the indigenous knowledge of the people of
Sri Lanka and currently is being put into practice as a pilot project in
the Uda-walawa, Verugal, and Konakumbukwewa areas.
The Wild Life Conservation Department, the Palmyrah Development Board
and Hector Kobbekaduwa Agrarian Research and Training Institute are
actively engaged in the exercise, and International Elephant Fund
provides partial financial assistance to implement the action" said the
Practical Action South Asia Programme Regional Director Vishaka
Hidellage said that Practical Action Sri Lanka has organised a series of
programmes to stimulate alternative thinking within Sri Lanka and create
interest on viable options to face the challenges to national
development and contribute to eradicate poverty more effectively.
Practical Action has been complementing the Sri Lankan Government's
development program since it set up office in Sri Lanka in 1989 under
it's former name Intermediate Technology Development Group and has done
a large number of development programmes to uplift the living standards
of under-privileged people in Sri Lanka such as mini hydro power
projects, irrigation schemes, and agricultural programs.
Practical Action Sri Lanka has organised a number of programmes to
mark the 100th birth anniversary of E.F. Schumacher its founder, such as
awareness programmes and the creation of a platform to discuss insights
and strategies promoted by Practical Action, based on Schumacher