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Floods to Court

30 November 2010. A petition, seeking an order to ensure the removal of all the obstacles that create water to stagnate in the Western province, mainly in the Colombo city was submitted to the Western Provincial High Court today by the Centre for Environmental Justice. Recent floods in Colombo is a result of the unplanned activities including filling of wetlands.
Recent posts

More Paint brands found with high lead levels

Press Release

06th April 2010, Colombo- As a result of the continuous research on lead in paint, Centre for Environmental Justice found another three paint brands with high lead levels including a brand which has obtained the SLS standard.

The latest results show that 10 enamel paint samples out of 14 samples tested contain lead as high as 42495 mg/kg. The paints with yellow, green and orange colours contain high lead levels.

It is unfortunate that while most paint manufacturers produce lead free paint for the international market, they still produce leaded paints for the local market. This is a grave injustice for the local consumers.

Therefore we demand all leaded paint to be removed from the local market as well. We also request the paint manufacturers to establish a mechanism to give free advice to the local consumers on safe removal of old lead paint and application of new lead free paint.

We advise all the paint consumers to avoid lead paint and always request lead free paint from th…

Paint manufacturers must protect children’s health

Appeal to recall all leaded paints in the market
Press Release

15 March 2010, Colombo- We are alarmed by the massive green washing campaign conducted by paint manufacturers regarding the lead in paint research conducted by Toxics Link and IPEN in collaboration with the Centre for Environmental Justice, Sri Lanka and ten countries.

“Instead of pin pointing faults of the research, paint industries have a moral responsibility to test their products themselves and bring down the levels of heavy metals including lead, to the acceptable standards for protecting the health of children in Sri Lanka” says Hemantha Withanage of the Centre for Environmental Justice.

The Paint Manufacturers’ Association claims in their advertisement appearing in some news papers on 14th March 2010 titled “The Truth” that they have “collectively undertaken to reduce and eliminate harmful substances in their products portfolio including lead, mercury and chromium to internationally accepted levels.” However, they als…

Mandatory Standards necessary for decorative paints in Sri Lanka

Press Release

08 March 2010, Colombo- This refers to the Lead in Decorative paints Global Study conducted by the Toxics Link and International POPs Elimination Network in collaboration with the Centre for Environmental Justice, Sri Lanka and other organisations in ten countries.

The research was carried out only for the randomly selected products of four brands out of dozens of brands available in Sri Lanka. It was found that all samples contain lead in different levels which are as low as 4 ppm to as high as 137, 325 ppm. Except one brand, other enamel paint samples exceed the permitted level which is 600 ppm as per the SLS standards.

No limit has been mentioned in the SLS standards for emulsion paints. The limit given under the United States is only 90 ppm. Except one sample, all other emulsion paint samples contained less than 90 ppm of total lead concentration.

It has been brought to our notice that one paint manufacturer in Sri Lanka has claimed that they are the only Sri Lankan b…
Sri Lanka- Law to label GM foods gazetted

17 August 2006, Colombo. As requested by the Centre for Environmental Justice in its Writ application No.1380/06, Hemantha Withanage Vs Consumer Affairs Authority and others filed on 4th May 2005, the Government of Sri Lanka finally gazetted GM food labeling legislation (Gazette Ex. Ordinary. 1456/22 , 3rd August 2006) early this month making it mandatory for importers and local manufacturers of GM foods to label their products in the future.
The law which will come into effect from January 1, 2007 requires all GM food items to carry a prominent sticker informing that the product contains GM materials, giving the consumer the freedom of choice. Defaulters of this law will have to face a six-month jail term or a Rs. 10,000 fine or both under the Food Act, No. 26 of 1980.
All GM food importers will be required to apply for a permit from the Food Advisory Committee chaired by the Health Services Director General to import GM products in future. T…
CEJ New case- challenging the constitutionality of the North Western Province Environmental Statute

July 14 2006,Colombo, Mr. Hemantha Withanage, Executive Director of the Centre for Environmental Justice (CEJ) of 59/14, Kuruppu Road, Colombo 08 has filed a writ application in the Court of Appeal challenging the constitutionality of the North Western Province Environmental Statute. The application was supported today (14th July 2006) by Counsel Dr. Mangala Wijesinghe appearing with Attorneys Ravindranath Dabare and Ms. Nilmal Wickramasinge, before a bench comprising Justices Sripavan and Abrew.

The North Western Province Environmental Statute No. 12 of 1990 was purportedly made by the North Western Provincial Council following the enactment of the 13th Amendment to the Constitution of 1987. The Petitioner stated in his application to the Court that there is no law made by Parliament empowering Provincial Councils to make Statutes for the protection the environment and therefore the N…
Norochcholai Coal Power Plant-Court issued notice to Ceylon Electricity Board and others-C.A.Writ Application No. 1112/2006

25th July 2006, Colombo, Today Court of Appeal issued notice to the Ceylon Electricity Board and eight other respondents to appear before Court in respect of the proposed Norochcholai Coal Power Plant in Sri Lanka.

S. M. Mubarak of 32/15,Service Road, Puttalam and seven others have filed a writ application in the Court of Appeal of Sri Lanka seeking a writ of mandamus against the Ceylon Electricity Board [CEB] and eight other Respondents to conduct an Environment Impact Assessment [EIA] in respect of the Puttalam Coal Power Project at Norochcholai (900MW) and to obtain approval for the same from the Central Environmental Authority [CEA] in the performance of the statutory duty in compliance with the provisions of the National Environmental Act No.47 of 1980, as amended .The application was supported by Counsel Dr. Mangala Wijesinghe appearing with Attorneys Mr. R…