All are shouting when forests are destroying. The government should take action to stop large scale deforestation. This is not about that.

We have to cut trees to:
1. Prepare the land for construction or
2. Providing material for construction.

1. We cannot reduce that as everyone needs to build a house. Regular legal method is enough to monitor that. We have to advise and give details to those landowners about the plants that can be planted with small spaces and encourage – educate them to plan the houses with more surrounded green. Even with 6P lands. Then, there will be more nurseries with household plants and more green, but we have to give a better solution to the other issue.

2. There are so many durable alterations for wood, but people are afraid of using them as they are not much educated about them and prices are much expensive.

(Eg: Current MDF we have here does not behave well with water and with these rainy conditions here in Sri Lanka, people believe that it will get destroyed with moisture. One of a known senior carpenter informed me that there was a better south-African board in those days and is really durable, but they are no more here as the might be high and only cheaper Chinese stuff is imported).

Aluminum for the door frames is the most durable, but it’s expensive than wood, so the people are to select wood (even the Upper-Middle class people).

Our people spend so much of hard-earned money on house construction. In european countries, they sell the house in 5-10 years to build a new one or change the furniture in 5 – 10 years. Our people try to buy the most durable wood like teak – jack for lats 25 -30 years and cutting trees is continued.

IKEA is making furniture mostly with artificial wood – MDF. Making MDF here is not a solution as its still our trees. In foreign countries, they grow trees only for that purpose. We don’t have that.

We don’t need Kumbuk to decorate the stairs or a floor.people unnecessarily following those traditional myths. using kumbuk should be banned. There are better similar materials.

We should encourage importing good quality wood alterations; consider reducing tax, but should monitor the quality of the product. Saving our environment will be a bit more valuable than earning through tax.

~ Pathum Kalubowila

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