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Dhaka Tribune

Experts: Mix of planting trees and building walls can protect from climate disasters

Long-term and large-scale plantation program is the key to reduce the rise of temperature, says one of the experts

Update : 16 Sep 2021, 12:44 AM

A mix of plantation of climate-resilient and fast-growing Koroch trees and the building of community-based protective concrete walls can be an effective way to protect people living on the haor areas from climate disasters like Afal and flash floods, experts say.

Afal and flash floods are the most prominent climate-induced disasters that wreak havoc on the livelihood of the haor people including loss of land leading to human displacement.

They made the statement during a local-level consultation workshop on the strategies needed to adapt due to the changing climate by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change and United Nations Development Program (UNDP) with support from Green Climate Fund (GCF) on Wednesday.

More than 30 representatives from different government offices, local government representatives, academics and journalists attended the consultation to formulate the National Adaptation Plan (NAP) at Shalla upazila in Sunamganj.

The objective of the consultation was to share the findings of different climate vulnerability issues generated from Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) and Key Informant Interviews (KIIs) conducted in the area earlier

Participants at the local level consultation held at Shalla Upazila Parishad Courtesy

The key areas included fisheries, agriculture and rural livelihoods to identify immediate, medium and long-term potential adaptation options.

The researchers conducted 12 KIIs with government officials, local government representatives, fishermen and farmers and nine FGDs with livestock, fishermen and other livelihood disaster management groups, youth and local communities from Bahara, Shalla, Aatgaon and Hobibpur unions, engaging more than 100 participants.

The experts opined that every union should have two Killa (a concrete construction built on relatively high land) to help the people store their harvest and livestock in case of flash fools that mostly occurs during April-May every year.

Also Read - Experts critical of poor utilization of huge climate budget

Mr Rupchan Das, an agriculturist, said: “To reduce the rise of temperature, there is no other alternative but adopting large scale and long term plantation projects. Such plantation is equally beneficial for agriculture, fishing and livestock farming.” 

Md Abdur Rahman, instructor at Upazila Resources Centre, said: “Incorporation of basic education on Climate Change at the primary level will help raise awareness at household level and initiate behaviour change at the individual level.”

Mr Dipu Ranjan Das, vice chairman of the Shalla upazila, said: “Korroch plantation should be done through community ownership. To reduce financial loss from a bad harvest, the government should seriously consider initiating and mainstreaming agricultural insurance.”

Also Read - Bangladesh children at ‘extremely high risk’ from climate crisis

Climate change has become a global phenomenon but more often, its manifestations and impacts which are felt by nations are local-context-specific. 

Md Al Muktadir Hussain, UNO of Shalla upazila, said: "NAP is a timely need for Bangladesh specially for haor areas. Different environmental impacts need to be taken into account in this regard to combat climate change.”

NAP will create the linkage between climate change adaptation and the national development process and postulate the urgent need for mainstreaming a medium to long term adaptation plan into the national economic and development planning processes.

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