Author/s:

Jabed, M.
Nath, T.
Paul, A.

Publisher:

Springer Link

Year of Publication:

2018

The salinity intrusion into fresh groundwater is a serious problem in coastal regions of Bangladesh. It has both direct and indirect efects on human well-being. This study was carried out in two coastal villages of south-eastern part of Bangladesh with the aim of examining peoples’ perception of the water salinity impacts on human health. Data were collected from randomly selected 153 semistructured household interviews, 10 key-informant interviews and two group discussions. The water salinity was measured for shallow tube-well (STW) and pond in three distinct seasons. The mean water salinity of STW varied from 5.11 to 6.48 dS/m, while pond water salinity level was in the range of 0.11–3.12 dS/m. The salinity level varied depending on depth of tube-well and distance from the sea. Due to the use of saline water, villagers sufered from several diseases including skin diseases, hair loss, diarrhea, gastric and high blood pressure. In one village high salinity restricted villagers to practice agriculture on limited agricultural land. Increasing salinity due to adverse climatic conditions in coastal areas would pose a serious threat on household water supplies. Suggestions are made to improve the management of fresh surface water and groundwater resources in salt-afected areas and to explore rainwater harvesting as a sustainable solution.

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