Next stop, the sea: Sri Lanka’s old buses are a new home for marine life

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The Sri Lankan government has recently been sinking decommissioned buses and boats at selected sites off the country’s coast to serve as fish-breeding sites. Initial observations are encouraging, with marine life starting to flock to these artificial structures; conservationists say the project needs to be regularly monitored. Shipwrecks abound around Sri Lanka, thanks to its position on the Indian Ocean shipping route, with many decades-old wrecks now serving as artificial reefs hosting an abundance of marine life and doubling as tourist attractions. Conservationists have welcomed the new program, but say there also needs to be greater enforcement against destructive fishing practices that target and damage natural fish-breeding sites such as coral reefs. GALLE, Sri Lanka — Buses are the most common mode of public transport in Sri Lanka. But after thousands of trips, facilitating millions of commuter rides over their operating lifetime, the buses are decommissioned and sent to junkyards, where they decay and corrode under the elements. Now, however, the Sri Lankan government is giving them a second lease of life by sinking them in the ocean to serve as fish-breeding sites. The Sri Lankan Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources ( DFAR ), working with other government […]

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