By- Director board – Uma Oya CIC. UK
The Uma Oya development project has inflicted more damage than any other development projects in Sri Lankan history.
In addition to the corruption that took place throughout all stages of this so-called multi development project, it is impossible to estimate or assume the on-going environmental, ecological, socio-economic and sociological damage that has been caused and will continue to be caused. The country’s progressive intellectuals, academics, experts and environmental activist are working tirelessly to assess and estimate the extent of future damage implicated and would inflicted by this project.
This project has inflicted more damage than any other disaster in Sri Lankan history
The middle upland (highlands) in the heart of the country gives birth to 103 tributaries and consequently is a major determinant of the country’s climate. Under this project the digging of 20km long tunnels; the building of artificial water reservoirs, underground electric generating plants and dams; and the deforestation of many thousands of acres of natural precious forest; has caused irreplaceable damage to the country’s middle hilly eastern areas. This so called multi developmental project has resulted in monumental levels of homelessness, farmers who have lost their farmland as well as damage to the public buildings and properties. Such environmental, ecological and social calamities continue while proposed preventative measures show no signs of materialisation, where, when it is doubtful that there is any development project in the world that causes so much damage, raises huge concern.
The scale of the ongoing damage to the underground water reservoir hypogeum of the country’s middle uplands (highlands) is visible through observing the cracked earth surfaces, uninhabitable cracked houses, the seeping of underground water; and the drying out of wells, natural water springs, water falls, streams and reservoirs. Amongst them the most heartbreaking example is the water seepage in the main tunnel which despite some patching up continues to leak an estimated 3000 litres per second! And still continuing! This unnecessary seepage is from the hill country’s natural underground hypogeous water reservoirs that were formed through many million years of natural water collection and deposition. It is understood that these reservoirs will empty very soon and consequently the moisture contained in surface level soil will also severely dry out. Such parched soil layers will absorb large amounts of water when the south-eastern heavy monsoon rains hit, which will increase soil layer movement. The combination of this soil movement and the inevitable action of gravitational forces on the deeper dehydrated soil layers will produce mountain sinkage and the sliding of hilly land and everything on it.
Further, experts are of the view that a series of high impact explosions conducted to facilitate the tunnel boring process has resulted in the disastrous consequences of producing cracks and fissures in the deep underground soil layers. It is predicted that these high tension explosions have heavily impacted on the integrity of the structure of mountains in the whole mountain range with the result of intensifying sinkage and land sliding thereby undergoing permanent and disastrous geographical change.
According to our source; experts, academics, and intellectuals with an interest in this issue, are reaching a conclusion that in the very near future, the eastern uphill (highland) area will face immense and catastrophic destruction as described above, causing a disaster that will lead to the perishing of hundreds of thousands of people, on a scale a few hundred times that of the 2004 Tsunami. It would be an apocalyptic.
We still have limited time left to prevent the catastrophe that is due to unfold in the country. We have the knowledge, skills, expertise and technology to stop this impending disaster. What is required is for people with the proper understanding of the gravity of this matter to come together and contribute whatever time, skills, effort and materials possible. In this light we graciously urge you to join with us at Umaoya.org