SL to buy Spanish ocean cleaner: Dy. Min. Mannapperuma

Mahaweli Development and Environment Ministry would buy a high tech ocean cleaning vessel through Spanish funds in near future, Deputy Minister of Environment Ajith Mannapperuma said.

“The vessel is capable of cleaning waste in saline water,” he said.

He was addressing a press conference at UNP headquarters
Sirikotha last morning.

The ship would be bought following a request made by the Mahaweli Development and Environment Ministry.

He said the Ministry hoped to use the ship in special projects to clean 14 tourist beaches and to upgrade them among the best beaches according to international standards.

He said that a cleanliness of a beach was a main factor tourists considered when making decisions on destinations.

The Deputy Minister said the ship would be also used in removing oil spills like the recent incident at the Uswetakeiyawa Beach.

He said that the President had already discussed with the Minister of Ports and Shipping, to lease out the ship to the Sri Lanka Port Authority (SLPA) when the vessel was not engaged.

He said the Government could settle the funds obtained for the ship to the Spanish Government.

Ocean cleaner ships are capable of collecting marine debris, macro plastic waste and cleaning up ocean oil spills. (Thilanka Kanakarathna)