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Natural Resources of Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka’s landscape presents a rich mosaic of forests, wetlands, agricultural land, and coastal and marine systems whose character and distribution are conditioned by the wide range of climate, topography, and soil types found in the island. The climatic and geomorphological variations in the country have resulted in a clear demarcation into broad climatic, floristic and faunal zones, and this information was used for identifying bioregions.
The biodiversity rich ecosystems in the island, such as the lowland rainforest and the coral reefs, are confined spatially to specific geographic areas. These areas often present special problems for biodiversity conservation. One example is the biodiversity rich wet zone forests that are under threat due to the high population density in the surrounding areas and the acute shortage of land. Another example is the threat to the coastal and marine habitats in the west and southwest caused by overharvesting of marine resources. These problems have to be addressed through location specific conservation action.
A noteworthy feature of Sri Lanka's biodiversity is the remarkable high proportion of endemic species among its flora and fauna: 23% of the flowering plants and 16% of the mammals in the island are endemic. Sri Lanka has a wide range of topographic and climatic variation and this contributes to the special features of its biodiversity.
Sri Lanka is endowed with industrial mineral resources that include apatite, calcite, clay, dolomite, feldspar, graphite, ilmenite, kaolin, mica, quartz, rutile, silica sand, and zircon. Graphite and mineral sands (mostly monazite) are mainly exported. The country also exported geuda (pale white or colorless sapphire), loose gemstones, and jewellery.The coastline of Sri Lanka is approximately 1,600 km long and hosts a number of interrelated coastal ecosystems, including bays, beaches, dunes, estuaries, lagoons and tidal flats. Found within in these are a range of habitats such as mangroves, coral reefs. These coastal areas support a range of nationally important economic activities including tourism, fisheries and port developments. 

Last Updated on: 19-05-2010

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