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Staff Correspondent
Proper integrated and strategic planning is key to overcoming challenges, and can make coastal development sustainable.
This observation came out of a conference on Tuesday titled “Sustainable Coastal Development: Opportunities, Challenges and Strategic Planning” organised by Institute of Engineers, Bangladesh (IEB) at IEB conference room in the capital.
In his speech as a special guest, Fisheries and Livestock Minister Mr Narayon Chandra Chanda said, “Due to various initiatives of our government, the fisheries sector has seen a lot of progress by using scientific methods. We produced five lakh metric tons fish in FY 2016-2017 which contributes four percent of our total GDP.”
About Shrimp production Narayon said, “Now our farmers can produce nearly 1,500 kg shrimp per hectare while the previous production was 250 to 450 per hectare.” Mentioning the seminar as very timely and constructive initiative, Minister urged the engineers to use modern technology for achieving sustainable coastal development.
In his speech as special guest, Director General of BWDB Engr Md Mahfuzur Rahman said “Engineers are the Craftsmen for implementation of sustainable coastal development. No development can be sustainable without water as it plays vital role in every sector. We have to call other departments for a strategic planning which can make our projects sustainable.”
Chief engineer of BWDB & Chairman of civil engineering division of IEB Engr Md Habibur Rahman presented the keynote paper (part-1) on overall complexity of water resources, overview of BWDB and resources, opportunities, problems and challenges of coastal zones.
The vision of BWDB is, development and management of water resources projects, management and mitigation of river bank erosion, stake-holders participation in project planning, designing and implementation of environment friendly development and promoting food production through surface water irrigation.
During his presentation, Habibur Rahman discussed some projects, planning and mentioned various achievement of the present government in water development and fish production.
He said, “Due to the initiative of the government, Bangladesh has established its sovereign rights on more than 118,813 sq kms of territorial sea, 200 nautical miles (370 km) of Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and all kinds of living resources under the continental shelf up to 354 nm from the Chittagong coast.”
He also briefly discussed ‘Bangladesh Delta Plan (BDP) 2100: A mega plan in the history of Bangladesh includes 80 mega projects’ and said that 80 percent of projects of this plan is related to coastal zones, rivers and water related systems .
Engr Md Habibur Rahman, Deputy Team Leader, CEIP-1, BWDB presented the keynote paper (part-2) on coastal zones of Bangladesh, coastal polders [How it is affected by climate change], coastal embankment improvement Project and Strategic Plan for Coastal Embankment Improvement.
Deputy Executive Director of Center for Environmental and Geographic Information Services (CEGIS) Engr Malik Fida Abdullah Khan discussed various issues related to strategic planning, environmental problems in coastal zones and achieving sustainable development goals (SDGs).
He said most of the initiatives will go in vain if we do not go for integrated planning.