Providing incentives to local communities for wise stewardship of coastal habitats (LK7).

Sri Lanka: Puttlam, Kalpitiya, Northwest Sri Lanka.


LK7 seeks to reduce the impacts of destructive fishing practices on seagrass habitats and provide income generation opportunities to local communities in return for their commitments to wise habitat and natural resource use in the Puttlam lagoon area.

A socio-economic survey will be carried out to understand the economic status of the communities in the project area. An ecological survey will study local community–seagrass interactions to identify and assess any potential damage to habitats in Puttlam lagoon. With this baseline data, a comprehensive education and awareness programme will be devised and implemented, targeting specific areas of the lagoon. Communities will be actively engaged in alternative livelihood and capacity development programmes to discourage Illegal fishing practices such as the use of push nets, monofilament nets, cage nets, etc.

Alternative livelihood projects for fishing communities will include batik, sewing, sea bass aquaculture, dry fish packaging, coir mat production, ornamental fish breeding etc., and a memorandum of understanding (MoU) will be prepared containing an agreement with fishermen to not to use any harmful fishing practices in the Puttlam lagoon. In addition, marketing, branding and finance management training will be provided for community members to improve their products.

  1. Establish and sign 100 Memoranda of Understanding between SLTCP and fishermen, including an agreement to refrain from using illegal fishing nets in Puttlam lagoon.
  2. Achieve a 75 percent reduction in harmful fishing methods.
  3. Increase community income by 40 percent.
  4. Conduct 24 educational workshops, 2 exhibitions and 24 environmental film shows, and establish 5 youth clubs.
  5. Generate pre- and post-project socio-economic survey reports, and pre- and post-project habitat assessment reports.