UNDP

Sharing South-South Experience on Restoration and Management of Mangrove Ecosystem

05 Nov 2016

View of restored mangrove forest from the same watchtower
Mangroves are lifeline of the coast. Mangrove forests can store more carbon than most other types of habitats on the planet. The monetary value of goods and services received from mangroves is not less than US $ 186 annually (WWF). However, degradation of mangrove forest and the resulting impacts are major concerns for the countries in the tropic. Bangladesh supports the world’s largest single tract of mangrove forest. The total coverage of mangrove forest is 4.07% of the country’s land area. Bangladesh has years of experience of mangrove restoration. The area of planted mangrove in the country is more than 190,000 ha. The country has also been successful in applying community based conservation and management of mangrove forests. … Read more

What Works for the Urban Poor?

03 Oct 2016

The Urban Partnerships for Poverty Reduction (UPPR), one of the largest urban development programmes in the world, helped nearly three million people improve their livelihoods and living conditions in just 7 years between 2008 and 2015 in cities and towns of Bangladesh. This article highlights best practices of UPPR and explores the challenges of reducing urban poverty. Urban poverty has been left off the development agenda in Bangladesh, and the UPPR experience can show in practical ways how to bring it back to centre. … Read more

Building Resilience, Constructing Lives

12 Jul 2016

One of the beneficiaries of UNDP-ERF reconstructing his house at Jumkarchar in Kurigram Sadar. Photo: Santu Das/UNDP
Like every other day, Abdur Rashid and his family went to bed early knowing they would have to be up again in a few hours, ready for work. But as he fell asleep to the sloshing of the rain accompanied by the occasional rumbling of thunder, a strange feeling of unease played at the back of his mind. In the wee hours of the night, a dreaded roaring startled him and he sat up in bed. A thousand thoughts went through his head as he saw the barrage of water gush into his home, tearing through the flimsy fencing. He yelled for his family members to wake up, as he rushed towards the broken wall of the hut to try and hold off the water with his own body and whatever else he found near. Within a few seconds he realized his efforts were futile – there was no stopping this. He screamed for help frantically and waded to the other side of the hut to try and lift the bed, one of the very few possessions in their otherwise scant house. Soon he realized their efforts here would fall short too, as he saw the level of water increase rapidly … Read more

How to move on from disaster risk - literally

07 Jul 2016

A fisherman casts his net near a line of modular "mobile" houses in Sariakandi, Bangladesh. Photo: Md. Moazzem Mostakim Timur, UNDP
In Bangladesh, where worsening river erosion and other disasters destroy huge numbers of homes each year, one innovation could cut losses and build resilience: “mobile” houses that can be dismantled, moved and reassembled in a matter of hours. The light-weight homes, developed by a flood-prone Bangladeshi community with the help of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Australian Aid, use low-cost, locally available materials and can be quickly carried away without the need for trucks or other equipment. In Sariakandi, an area in northern Bangladesh, floods regularly inundate homes, most recently during the 2014 monsoon. … Read more

Cyclone Roanu is a reminder: we must focus on preventing crises, even as we respond to them

23 May 2016

Bangladesh’s exposure to cyclones will not lessen – in fact, with climate change we may see the coast battered more often, harder, and in unpredictable ways. UNDP Bangladesh
As the World Humanitarian Summit unfolds and leaders discuss the humanitarian impact of rising crises and disasters, half a million people are currently displaced after Cyclone Roanu pummeled the Bangladesh coastline on Saturday, with 55mph winds and floodwaters several feet high. Making landfall in the country’s south-east, the cyclone brought devastation to areas unaffected by cyclones for the past 25 years. Where there used to be crops there is now salt water – the sea surrounding even the cyclone shelter. We are already on the ground in Banshkali, the hardest-hit area and the site of 7 of the 24 confirmed deaths caused by cyclone. The embankment protecting the people living there caved in, flooding homes, crops, and freshwater fish ponds.   Meeting with survivors and surveying the damage, our team learnt that in some areas, as many as ninety percent of houses may be damaged, leaving families without shelter for the oncoming monsoon season. Many are now sheltering on a raised road nearby.   Further south, in the sub-district Chokoria, the embankment had not been fully reconstructed following last year’s Cyclone Komen. On Saturday, the community was again inundated by Roanu. The poor recovery left the villages even more vulnerable than … Read more

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