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Vulnerability Analysis to Climate Change and Sea Level Rise: A Pilot Study of Bangladesh

Project Title:   Vulnerability Analysis to Climate Change and Sea Level Rise: A Pilot Study of Bangladesh
Type of Project Climate Change (Country Study)
Duration:   1993-1994
Status:   Complete
Partner Organizations:   Resource Analysis-The Netherlands, DoE-Govt. of Bangladesh (GoB), Approtech Consultants and BCAS
Key words: Vulnerability, Sea level rise, GIS, Drought, Land Use, Flood, ICZM.
Main Objective:   1. To develop tools and techniques for use by the government of Bangladesh for future coastal resource planning and management. 2. To identify policies and technical capacity that will be needed within Bangladesh to deal with climate change related issues and problems.
Brief Description: The study was a joint initiative of the GoB and the Netherlands government as a follow up activity of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) to fulfill the commitment of both the governments to the Intra-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). GIS tools were used to create database on drought prone areas of Bangladesh. Vulnerable zones were digitized; new maps were prepared by overlaying maps on land use, drought, demographic pattern and flash flood prone regions. Training was conducted for a group of government officials from different government agencies on computer assisted decision support tools for integrated coastal zone management. The study considered four aspects for assessing vulnerability: Primary Physical Effects (PPE), Natural Ecosystems (NEC), Socio-economic Stress (SES) and Implementation of Response Strategies (IRS). The country was divided into nine vulnerability zones (V-zones) to investigate regional vulnerabilities. The methodology followed in this pilot study aimed to generate overall indices of vulnerability. Bangladesh remains highly vulnerable to climate change and sea level rise, irrespective of future developments in and outside the country.
Output 65% of the total population in Bangladesh is affected every year by inundation. This proportion is likely to increase under the conditions of climate change and sea level rise. Under both moderate and severe climate change scenarios, the intensity of droughts will increase in comparison with no climate change situation. During the Rabi season, the area severely affected by drought could triple from 4000 to 12,000 km2 under the severe climate change scenario. The incidence of flash floods is also expected to increase. The average precipitation is assumed to increase by 18 and 33 percent respectively under monsoon conditions.
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