Sri Lanka spends 8 mln USD on crackers per year to prevent human-elephant
September 28, 2022
Sri Lanka's wildlife ministry said Wednesday that the government spends an
estimated 8 million U.S. dollars annually on firecrackers to prevent
human-elephant conflicts in the country.
Minister of Agriculture, Wildlife and Forest Resources Conservation Mahinda
Amaraweera said the government requires at least 1.4 million elephant
repellents (crackers) per year, which are purchased from local fireworks
He said the main reasons for elephants invading human settlements are that
villages are built in the forest lands, where elephants are roaming freely
and there is an absence of food and drinking water for the wild elephants.
The minister assured that steps are being taken to look into a permanent
solution which will prevent further deaths of humans and elephants in this
According to the most recent elephant census, the population of elephants
in Sri Lanka is around 6,000, of which only 5 percent is estimated to be
As per the data available, around 300 elephants die every year due to the
human-elephant conflict, while over 100 human lives are also lost.
In 2019, Sri Lanka recorded the world's highest number of elephant deaths
in the human-elephant conflict with 407 elephants being killed.
Killing wild elephants in Sri Lanka is a criminal offense but there have
been regular reports of angry villagers poisoning or shooting the animal.