The Yala National Park, Sri Lanka’s renowned wildlife sanctuary is to close for the month of September due to a prevailing drought – one that affects the animals far more than usual, due to unexpected severity. To ease suffering and the possibility of ranged scavenging, Jetwing Yala has teamed up with the Tissamaharama Independent Jeep Drivers’ Association to provide more than 190,000 litres of water to the resident wildlife in the park.
Launched in January this year, the resort utilizes reverse osmosis technology which was the only self sustaining option of obtaining purified water, especially in a remote location such as Yala. Seawater is collected and undergoes desalination through reverse osmosis process, which produces pure water from saline water.
The resultant product water is used for a variety of hotel operations excluding drinking purposes. Operation of the plant is complemented by the recently opened solar park, which currently supplies 40 percent of the hotel’s daily electricity demand and is the country’s largest privately owned solar plant.
The water harvested is then pumped into bowsers sponsored by the Jeep Drivers’ Association, and distributed in the Yala National Park. To date, the quantity donated stands at just over 190,000 litres.
“The Yala National Park is one of Sri Lanka’s greatest treasures, and we must do our best to protect, conserve, and sustain this miracle. I commend the Jeep Drivers’ Association for taking the initiative and for their help in getting the water to the places that need it the most” said Gamunu Srilal, General Manager of Jetwing Yala.
“Hopefully through this programme we provide the animals with some much needed relief, and give them adequate time to rest and recover from the drought before the park is opened to the public once again”, he continued.