Give maximum priority to adaptation to climate change: Experts

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RANGPUR, April 20, 2017 (BSS) – Experts and environmentalists have stressed the need for putting maximum priority on reducing the adverse impacts of climate change and adapting to the situation in all affected sectors in Bangladesh.

Agriculture and Environment Coordinator of RDRS Bangladesh Mamunur Rashid said the changing climate already caused concerns in the sectors of agriculture, ecology, bio-diversity, environment, weather, underground water level, public health and habitation.

“As a result, rainfalls, floods, cyclones, droughts, cold and hot spells, sea and surface warming, water contamination, water and soil salinity, degradation of aquatic systems, silting and drying up of rivers and river erosions are taking place,” he said.

Associate Professor of Begum Rokeya University and Senator of the Riverine People Dr Tuhin Wadud said the situation degrades faster because of melting ice due to temperature rise as a result of global warming following huge emission of the greenhouse gases.

Silting up of the riverbeds and lowering of underground water level due to its huge lifting for Boro farming and drying up of the rivers, tributaries, ponds, beels and haors have further added to the degrading situation in the country.

“If the present rate of climate change continues, one-fourth area of
Bangladesh would submerge under sea water by 2050 making millions people displaced and the country would alarmingly be prone to intense and frequent calamities,” Tuhin said.

Knowledge management and communication specialist of the climate resilient agriculture and food security project of World Bank Dr MG Neogi said the changing climate might cause imbalance in the nature leading to unthinkable catastrophes in future.

Dr Neogi also narrated the chronological background that triggered climate change and its adverse impacts on the agriculture and other sectors in Bangladesh as elsewhere in the globe and called for coordinated suggestions to overcome the formidable threats.

“Many other unpredictable situations might occur not only in Bangladesh, but also throughout the globe with various extents and intensities of
possible devastations in different continents because of the continuous climate change,” he said.

Betar Farm Broadcasting Officer of Rangpur Regional Agriculture Information Service Abu Sayem said the climate change already changed the period of appearance of different crop framing seasons causing concern in the
agriculture sector.

“Because of the huge change in overall climatic patterns, the seasonal rainfalls, floods, dry seasons, periods for sowing or planting the seed and seedlings and harvesting are severely being changed affecting agro-production in recent years,” he added.

Executive Director of ‘Northbengal Institute of Development Studies’, a research-based organisation, expressed concern over silting up of the riverbeds at an abnormal rate causing untimely flash floods and erosion and reducing cultivable land area.

“We must take time-befitting steps right now on a priority basis to educate farmers about crop cultivations keeping in view negative impacts of the changing climate to keep agro-activities movable and save the habitat from the possible catastrophes,” he said.