Climate Change and Its Impacts: The Case of Coastal Fishing Communities of the Meghna River in South-Central Bangladesh
The geographical location of Bangladesh makes it one of the most vulnerable countries to climate change. Climate-induced phenomena mainly affect the south-central region of Bangladesh (Laxmipur district) where they have begun to occur more frequently. The aim of the study was to identify the hydro-climatic factors that lead to weather-related disasters in the coastal areas and analyse the consequences of these factors on coastal livelihoods, with possible adaptation options using participatory rural appraisal (PRA) tools. The present study showed several disasters such as land erosion, depressions and cyclones, coastal flooding, storm surge, and precipitation. The frequency of these disasters is of a noticeable rate. Surveys have also discovered that land erosion is ongoing. Tidal water is being introduced directly into the mainland, and as a result of the salt intrusion, production capacity is declining. The coastal belt is an important area for fishing activities, but due to changed fishing times and a lack of Alternative Income Generating Activities (AIGAs), people have been forced to search for alternative livelihood options by taking both short-term and long-term adaptation options. Therefore, in order to increase awareness and minimize the losses, vulnerable communities must be fully incorporated into disaster response strategies. The government as well as national and international donor organizations should come forward and resolve the present situation of these vulnerable groups since otherwise, they will have to endure endless and miserable suffering due to the effects of climate change ahead in their lives.
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