These Communities Face Persistent Challenges from Flood and Riverbank Erosion : A Part from The Book : Living with Floods in Bangladesh’s Riverine Islands: Understanding Vulnerability and Resilience

Flood Vulnerability

In the chars of Bangladesh, the majority of residents possess limited economic assets and struggle to secure basic services. Over 70% of these inhabitants rely on farming and fishing for their livelihood. Notably, indicators such as share-cropping, agricultural day labor, and livestock rearing hint at the households’ constrained economic conditions. However, these communities face persistent challenges from flood and riverbank erosion, which devastate their farmlands and homes. Consequently, the already vulnerable char dwellers experience heightened food insecurity.

It is evident that adapting to and resisting the impacts of flooding are integral to the lives of those residing in the chars. Throughout their lives, these individuals often experience displacement from their original settlements, with both short-term and long-term relocations being a recurrent event in these regions. This vulnerability is exacerbated by factors including limited communication channels, heavy reliance on seasonal income, low earning potential, rapid household growth, unstable agricultural practices, and inadequate nutritional intake. Moreover, there is a notable lack of support from external organizations. Furthermore, an estimated 6.5 million char residents grapple with the absence of essential infrastructure, affecting their access to education, healthcare, and sanitation. A significant concern among these communities is securing clean drinking water, particularly due to recurrent flooding.

Author(s) Details:

Babul Hossain,
Management Science and Engineering, Hohai University, Nanjing-210000, China.

Guoqing Shi,
National Research Center for Resettlement, Hohai University, Nanjing-210000, China.

Md. Nazirul Islam Sarker,
School of Social Sciences, Universiti Sains Malaysia, 11800 Pulau Pinang, Malaysia.

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