Coca-Cola Beverages Sri Lanka has resumed operation at its Biyagama plant, after receiving an approval from the Central Environment Authority reinstating the restoration of their Environment Protection License (EPL).
The company cited that the CEA has ‘conditionally restored the EPL’ stating that it ‘was subject to implementation of the recommendations made by the authorities.’ The company resumed manufacturing operations at the plant on September 1.
Meanwhile, Director General of the CEA, K.S. Muthukudaarachchi speaking to The Nation stated that the company was given a period of one month to submit a comprehensive environment audit report as well as a its emergency preparedness plan. “The complete restoration of the EPL is at the sole discretion of the CEA which will review the environment audit,” he said. “In the meantime, the CEA is conducting regular checks on all industries along the river banks to ensure that there is no breach of the EPL.”
Industries located within a perimeter of four kilometers on either side of the river will be subjected to this stringed inspection process, he said. Meanwhile, the National Water Supply and Drainage Board has claimed a compensation of Rs.131 million due to the oil leak from the plant. Coca-Cola has agreed to reimburse the expenses as early as possible.