In-depth

broken embankment
Communities in Bangladesh are learning how to adapt to a rising spectre of environmental threats. Photo: UNDP Bangladesh

The challenges brought by the effects of climate change are amplified by Bangladesh’s specific geographical situation - a low-lying deltaic country with one of the highest population densities in the world. In the past decade, with UNDP’s strong support, the country has stepped forward with innovative practices and out of the box solutions to adapt to the constant rise in global temperature.

The country is signatory to major international conventions and multilateral agreements with regards to climate change mitigation and protection of the ozone layer. UNDP’s partnership with the government aims to undertake necessary reforms to implement these conventions and to catapult the interconnected issues of poverty, environment and climate at the heart of every national planning process, documents and guidelines. We work to ensure that communities are empowered to adapt, prevent, and mitigate all aspects related to climate change and environmental threats.

Climate Change Innovations

One of our flagship projects, which has been recognized internationally and is among UNDP Bangladesh top 10 results in 2006-2011, is the Improving Kiln Efficiency in Brick Making Industry (GREEN Brick) project. The traditional local brick industry is one of the largest sources of greenhouse gas emission in the country, estimated to be on the order of 6 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) annually. It is also a major source of land degradation and deforestation. To turn this rapidly growing industry in an environment-friendly undertaking, UNDP is implementing energy efficient kilns (specialized bricks-making ovens) throughout the country. This initiative will result in direct energy savings of kilotons of coal, as well as impressive reduction of CO2. So far, through media campaigns, the project has significantly raised awareness within the population and policy makers of the needs to protect ecologically critical areas.

To increase the resilience of coastal communities affected by climate change, UNDP notably afforested (re-established vegetation) in 6,372 hectares of coastal land, through the Community Based Adaptation to Climate Change through Coastal Afforestation (CBACC-CF) project. This innovative project introduces diversified livelihood activities for the population, as well as a capacity building for government officials, and knowledge sharing within and outside Bangladesh.

To increase the resilience of coastal communities affected by climate change, UNDP notably afforested (re-established vegetation) in 6,372 hectares of coastal land, through the Community Based Adaptation to Climate Change through Coastal Afforestation (CBACC) project. This innovative project introduces diversified livelihood activities for the population, as well as a capacity building for government officials, and knowledge sharing within and outside Bangladesh.

Sustainable land management (integrating concerns of land, water, biodiversity, and environment in meeting the rising resource demands) is particularly crucial in Bangladesh, as nearly two-thirds of the population live in rural areas. UNDP provides policy and planning advice to build the capacity of many stakeholders to use this approach and guide them with internationally recognized best practices to create a greener Bangladesh.

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