Haque, M.



Year of Publication:



The conical shape of the Bay of Bengal, the low-lying coast and Bangladesh’s very location on the tip of the sea have made the country most vulnerable to periodic natural disasters like, cyclone and tidal surges. The coastal zone is characterized by a vast network of rivers and tidal channels; erosion and accretion processes continue, siltation takes place on water courses and river beds; and the area is prone to cyclone, storm surges and salinity intrusion. Series of tropical cyclones, tornadoes, tidal bore attack the coast periodically. Threat of sea level rise due to climate change is also looming large. The people of the coast in particular and the country in general have developed through a process of innovation and practices, a variety of coping strategies and community-based adaptation measures that are well-suited to the local environment, economy and socio-cultural system. The paper argues that because of practicing of age-old indigenous knowledge and practices, people of the coast could lessen damages to lives and property to a great extent in the face of natural disaster. The paper further argues that the fierce people of the coast have been maintaining a co-existence with natural disaster by applying their indigenous knowledge and practices acquired from their forefathers over the years. Although, Bangladesh is a low greenhouse gas emitting country, it is one of the most vulnerable countries of the world concerning climate change. Due to its vulnerability, local community over the generations has developed many rural adaptation techniques, based on their localized knowledge and practices.

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