As the country is already facing adverse impact of climate change, Bangladesh Delta Plan should be prepared incorporating science-based knowledge and authentic data to ensure sustainable development, water and development experts told a roundtable here today.Bangladesh needs to formulate a delta plan that must include all relevant sectors of development and key knowledge-generating organizations to make it effective one, they told the knowledge agenda roundtable in a city hotel.
Professor Md Munsur Rahman, Institute of Water and Flood Management (IWFM) of Bangladesh University Engineering and Technology(BUET), said, “We need a delta plan, which will be developed based on knowledge and data generated from relevant organizations.”
“It must have long-term, holistic and integrated planning in Bangladesh,” he added.
Bangladesh Delta Plan-2100 Formulation Project funded by the Government of Netherlands organized the roundtable, where waters experts from BUET and organizations concerned, representatives of different local and international organizations and officials, among others, attended.
Project Director of Bangladesh Delta Plan-2100 Dr Md Mizanur Rahman also spoke at the programme.
Narrating characteristics of different deltas in the world, Prof Munsur said Bangladesh Delta Plan-2011 should be prepared conserving its own perspectives to deal with environmental challenges.
In his presentation, Prof Dr Jaap de Heer, team leader of Bangladesh Delta Plan-2100, has identified nine key issues of delta plan, which are rivers and ecosystem, coast, flood management, finance, water for food, urban water management governance, climate change and adaptive water management. All these issues should be considered to develop the delta plan, he added.
Noted water expert Maminul Haque Sarker said “In the coming decades, we may face many extreme situation in river systems due to human intervention as well as the climate change impact.”
“River discharge variation may arise naturally or through human action. Water diversion upstream may create a low-discharge environment downstream,” he said adding a low-discharge situation would have major impacts on river morphology, floodplains, groundwater and down-stream ecosystems.
Tahmina Shafique, Mott MacDonald, multidisciplinary international consultant organization, said when Bangladesh Delta Plan will enter the operational phase, it requires huge funding for successful implementation of the plan. “We have to explore innovative ideas for generating money to act effectively with delta plan …. Land reclaiming could be one of the major ways to generate revenue through setting up economic zones there,” he added.
Other speakers said formulation of Bangladesh Delta Plan is an ongoing process as many environmental events could be changed after five to 10 years. This delta plan needs to be restructured with the changed environmental issues, they added.