Sri Lanka, Colombo, 9th -10th June 2010

(Public Interest Law Foundation, Sri Lanka and Kalpavriksh, India)















National consultation on CCAs in Sri Lanka, Colombo  (Ashish Kothari)

  • Workshop brought together a number of government representatives, NGOs and community representatives who were able to comment on each other’s efforts and seek clarifications.
  • Some participants found the current definition of CCAs highly restrictive, particularly in its reference to an “area”. It was felt that the scope needed to be expanded to take into account various cultural practices which may or may not be bound by physical boundaries.
  • This workshop led to the clarification of concepts and definitions of CCAs. Participants figured that there are a number of traditional and new community efforts in Sri Lanka which could be considered CCAs but have not been so far. These include some of the home gardens
  • GEF-SGP is funding a number of initiatives in Sri Lanka related to regeneration and conservation of degraded forests; protecting forests from intending mining, forest protection for sustaining micro-hydal projects
  • Threat to CCAs from development activities, particularly tourism and infrastructural development for tourism
  • Many programmes within PAs, forests etc. seek people’s participation but do not yet talk about actual empowerment of communities. Some programmes, particularly ones dealing with traditional irrigation tanks, conservation of medicinal plants, home gardens, hermitages, have a good potential to develop into CCAs.

Emerging follow up needs

  • Sri Lanka CCA report for the South Asia documentation needs to be updated taking into account examples and issues emerging from the consultation.
  • IUCN and UNDP to consider possibility of taking the process of CCA documentation in Sri Lanka forward, using the format used by CCA India Directory in India with appropriate modifications.
  • Revision and updating the database on CCAs in Sri Lanka, particularly looking at some of the examples that were shared during the consultation also from various programmes mentioned during the consultation such as the ones that are CCA within the sites that are being supported by GEF-SGP and so on.
  • IUCN to work on developing the matrix on management types and governance types of PAs in Sri Lanka (including CCAs)
  • UNDP to look at possibilities of organising a similar consultation for all the GEF-SGP partners in Sri Lanka.
  • Exploring the possibilities of exchange visits of interested community members to other sites in India or other South Asian countries.
  • Need for a more media outreach and advocacy for CCAs
  • A more detailed analysis of legal provisions which have legal spaces for CCAs

See Annexure 5 for details