Climate Change and Sea Level Rise
Sri Lanka is one of the few countries which have a fully operational National Coastal Zone Management Plan, and the Government’s Coast Conservation Department has full responsibility for its implementation. In Sri Lanka, the Coast Conservation Act has defined the coastal zone on geo-physical considerations using linear dimensions. This narrow and geographically defined coastal zone does not recognize the interconnections within coastal ecosystems, its resources, and the human interactions. This limitation in the definition of the coastal zone could become a critical constraint when implementing action plans to respond to sea level rise in the country.
(i) Inundation and displacement of low lying coastal areas and wetlands
(ii) Coastal erosion and degradation of shorelines
(iii) Salinisation of estuaries and freshwater aquifers, and
(iv) Changes to and migration of coastal eco-systems and habitats.