Effect of Climate Change: Destruction on Agriculture

Effect of Climate Change: Destruction on Agriculture

Three decades ago, from mid June to mid August was rainy season. Based on this, farmers cultivated Ropa Aman and other crops at the coastal area. Now the situation has almost changed. Recent published a report of World Bank based on climate change showed that heat will increase and rain will decrease at the rainy season in Bangladesh. Heavy rain fall will happen in a very short time. Draught will be seen several times and it will increase in south- west area of the country. These kinds of draught might be seen regularly. The number of thunder will increase. Therefore, rain dependent crops production will decrease. Water flow is higher at the storm and flood than before. As a result, main crops Boro and Aman production will be hampered. These signs have already been seen in Potuakhali, Barguna, Bhola, Firozpur, Barishal, Zalakathi and southern coastal area.
A few years ago, slightly rain fall happened at Magh-Falgun in this region. The cold was so severe but rain was not seen for seasonal crops. This year rain fall did not happen in the Bangla months, Baisakh- Joistha, that is, April- May- June. Even at the full monsoon, in the months, July- August, sufficient rain fall did not occur.
Unnatural incident is found analysing the data of Bangladesh Water Development Board of Patuakhali and Barguna. Cyclone Mahasen attacked Patua khali coastal area on 16 May this year. As a result, 330 mm rainfall occurred within 24 hours in Barguna. In Patuakhali, the amount of rain was almost 400mm. After that, rain was not seen for many days. Rather, draught and heat were severe in southern coastal area. Salinity increased in the water of rivers. As a result, farmers could not cultivate Ropa Aman.
Monsoon rain has decreased, as found in last few years’ information. In 2007, from July to September, the amount of rainfall was 1,836mm in Patakhali and Borguna. At the same time in 2008, the amount of rainfall increased to 1,921mm. In 2009, it dropped off at 1280mm. It further declined in 2010 and the amount was 912mm. In 2011, the amount of rainfall increased at 1,712mm but again, it decreased in 2012 comparing with the previous year at 1066.
Prodip Kumar Chatterjee, an officer of Kalapara weather office of Patuakhali informed that, in each month of rainy season, the average amount of rainfall is 515mm, which is low from last three or four decades. The variation in rainfall is seen across the entire Bangladesh although the tides of the rivers of southern coastal area are seen natural. According to the data of meter gaze branch of water development board of Barguna and Patuakhali, the highest tide of rivers in Barguna and Patuakhali were 3.45 metres. In 2005, it increased to 3.51 metres. All of a sudden, the height of the tide decreased in 2006 and it reached the height of 2.96 meters. In 2007, during the cyclone SIDR, the height of the tide reached 4.22 metres. In 2009, tidal bore were raised into 3.65 meters by the cyclone AILA. This year on May 16, the tidal bore rose to 3.36 meters in cyclone Mahasen.
It has been evident that every year sea level rises due to global warming. A joint research of Bangladesh and Germany has given a report that last 300 years, the average rate of the rise of sea level is about 0.8 metre melting ice. As a result, the lands of the coastal area went under the water of 1.2-5.2 meters every year. In future, sea level may rise 7mm melting ice. As a result, coastal area may go under water from 3.3 to 8.9 millimetres. What would be more upsetting is that the warmth would rise and rain would become imbalanced.
In this regard, AKM Mostofa Zaman, Dean, faculty of Disaster Management, Patuakhali University of Science and Technical said that an aspect of climate change is the change of the rain during the monsoon. The amount of rainfall has declined in an alarming level and the warmth is rising. As a result, many natural calamities like cyclone, flood, and tidal bore have become evident regularly. It has further accelerated long lasting submerged water, inability of the production of crops and saltiness. Thus, it is highly necessary to take long-term initiatives to confront the curse of untoward climate change. Otherwise, the life in the coastal area will lose its normalcy that will put the lives of people living there into the tide of peril.

Children to suffer brunt of climate change

Children to suffer brunt

of climate change

by Yasmin Reema

Ten-year-old Shondesh has seen his home drown under water at least thrice and have moved from one char to another every time with his parents. In Gaibandha, Shondesh helps his parents with the little bit of farming that is available during the good seasons until there is another flood sweeping away their home. But that also goes to say that Shondesh has no education, there is no school in the small char habitat. In a four-member family of which his father is the breadwinner, Shondesh’s future unfortunately will be that of the scores of underprivileged and malnourished children in Bangladesh. A new study by a group of scientists at Stockholm in September revealed that climate change will largely affect children in the 10 most vulnerable countries including Bangladesh, which together has 620 million children below 18. Children will suffer the brunt in the forms of health problems, malnutrition and migration, says the study. According to Unicef, 25 million more children will suffer malnourishment because of climate change and a further 100 million will be suffer food insecurity, where they and their families are on the verge of running out of stock. In the 10 countries, children among the 150-200 million people feared to become homeless because of climate change will suffer more than adults because of their relative lack of resources and higher vulnerability to disease. Heat waves will become more intense and frequent under climate change, which will trigger heatstroke among babies and small children. Children find it difficult to regulate body heat. According to Jana Udyag – an environmental organisation based in Chittagong – nearly 46 per cent children in the rural parts of Bangladesh help their families by working in agriculture, looking after cattle and household work. This limits the prospects of the country – of 160-million people – to move up the economic ladder. Children therefore, remain vulnerable to malnutrition, lack of education and health related diseases. ‘Pure water is not available at the time of flood. Children become ill from different types of diseases like diarrhea, dengue and malaria,’ says Dr Helal Uddin Ahmed, an assistant professor of National Institute of Mental Health. The effects on children can be realised from the devastation of cyclone Aila in 2009. The cyclone destroyed 275 schools and partially damaged 1942 schools in Bangladesh. Reports stated that nearly 40 lakh people suffered in ‘Aila’ and children had to leave there homes with their parents to take shelter on embankments of rivers. The laws of Bangladesh which are for preventing natural calamity and climate change is not sufficient for saving children. It is important to emphasise on the management of protection taken at the time of natural calamity. These are to respond immediately to protect lives and wealth by involving local government to build infrastructure, training, advocacy, and awareness etc. The National Work Plan for Protecting Natural Calamity 2010 does not have any recommendation to protect children from the effects of climatic change. Unicef argues that, although children are more vulnerable to the effects of global warming, they have been largely left out of the debate. ‘We are hurtling towards a future where the gains being made for the world’s children are threatened and their health, wellbeing, livelihoods and survival are compromised … despite being the least responsible for the causes,’ David Bull, Unicef’s UK executive director was quoted by the Guardian. ‘We need to listen to them.’ The Guardian report states that children born last year will come of age in 2030, by which time the effects of climate change in the form of an increase in droughts, floods and storms are likely to be more in evidence. Climate change experts suggest an integrated effort involving economic and infrastructural preparedness to protect children, so that, in the countries are prepared to deal with the aftershocks of natural disasters. Bangladesh is considered the most vulnerable country exposed to the adverse effects of climate change in the foreseeable future. The country has been appreciated for being the most resilient to disasters. As the world prepares to meet at the 19th Conference of Parties on November 22 in Poland, disbursement of green climate fund will be crucial for policymakers to press and allocate on the child protection.

Risk of natural calamities and economic crisis

Risk of natural calamities and economic crisis
Published : Saturday, 05 October 2013
The life of the people of AILA and SIDR-affected areas is not still normal.

Yasmin Reema
Recently Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD), a non-governmental research organisation, arranged a programme in the BRAC Centre in the capital under the auspices of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) on “Building resilience to natural disaster and major economic crisis.” In this programme it came to light that Bangladesh is at the highest risk of natural disasters than other Asian countries. Risk of calamities is undoubtedly related to climate greatly and climate change is related to world economy.
So the people of Bangladesh who live in coastal areas suffer more greatly than the other countries that are at the risk of natural calamities. People face great economic losses frequently and infrastructures are destroyed. As a result of climate change sea level is rising and of the 21 cities at the highest risk, Dhaka is one. Some 1.30 billion people have fallen at the risk of natural disasters only because of the ice melting of the Himalayas. Specialists apprehended that tens of millions of people would be refugees due to natural disasters.
As a result of natural change great crisis may happen to agriculture. Some 100 million people who lead sub-standard life might starve for a long time. Asia and Africa will face a great crisis for want of food. The staple food of these regions is rice and rice cultivation will be difficult because of global warming. Researchers say that people may change their food habit for recovery from this problem. People might depend on pop corn or millet which can be grown in warm weather. It is very difficult to change food habit. Cultivable land is lessened and floods and cyclones have increased in Bangladesh for climate change. Its influence falls on agriculture, fishery, and wildlife directly. M Asaduzzaman, Director (Research), Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies (BIDS) said, “Climate change should be a subject matter for development plan and infrastructure. If development is hampered, economic prosperity is not possible.” Bangladesh has one of the largest sea coasts in the world. We can stop the rise of the sea partly by planting trees in the sea coast. River water flow should be ensured. If we can do so, we shall be able to protect ourselves from natural disasters. We should be careful about our rivers as they can flow without any obstacle.
The life of the people of AILA and SIDR-affected areas is not still normal. They are at health risk. Their anti-body has been lessened. So they are suffering from many diseases. In 11 districts of the south-west region of the country, some 150 million people live with salty water. Here shortage of pure water is a common scene. Sundori, kaoda and many other trees are dying as salty water has increased in the Sundarbans. Wild animals are abrogating. Flood will occur frequently in the coming days and the amount of destruction will increase. The flood of 2007 was devastating. As a result 0.5 million people had to leave their house and took shelter in safe places. The fear of such type of flood is still there. After all, the lower southern part of the country may go under water. Salimul Haque, Director of International Centre for Climate Change and Development (ICCCD) said, “In case of natural calamity Bangladesh is in a risk and she is also tolerable. We have to face natural calamity in local ways.” Nazrul Islam, a city specialist, said, “My grandfather had to leave his own house three times for natural calamity. He lost his land. But his four sons took higher education. It is his investment, it is his capability to face natural calamity.”
A report was published about natural calamities of Bangladesh, where disasters of natural calamities from 1998 to recent years were mentioned. It was estimated there that assets worth 4.30 billion dollars were destroyed in the flood of 1998, those worth 240 million dollars were ruined in SIDR of 2007 and those worth 270 million dollar were damaged in AILA of 2009.
The writer is Editor, Weekly Bornapat. E-mail: yasminreema@gmail.com

அணுசக்தியும் புவி வெப்பமயமாதலும் 6: செறிவூட்டம் சர்ச்சையில் சிக்கிய ஈரான்

This episode is on the next and most important step in fuel cycle – Enrichment. Throwing some light on the enrichment process, the episode also looks at recent controversy in which Iran was caught..

யுரேனியத்தை எரிசக்தியாக மாற்றுவதில் உள்ள அடுத்த கட்ட முக்கிய பணி, செறிவூட்டம் (Enrichment). அணுசக்தி ஆயுள் சுழற்சியில் செறிவூட்டத்திற்கு ஒரு முக்கிய பங்கு உண்டு. செறிவூட்டம்தான் யுரேனியத்தை எரிசக்தியாக தயார் செய்கிறது.

இன்று உலகில் இயங்கிக்கொண்டிருக்கும் அல்லது இயங்கத் தயாராகிக்கொண்டிருக்கும் சுமார் 500 அணு உலைகளுக்கும் யு-235 ஓரிடமியாக செறிவூட்டப்பட்ட யுரேனியம்தான் எரிசக்தி தேவையை பூர்த்தி செய்யும். இயற்கையாக கிடைக்கும் யுரேனியத்தில் யூ-235 மற்றும் யூ-238 என இரண்டு விதமான ஓரிடமிகள் உள்ளன. யூ-235 அணுக்களை பிளப்பதன் மூலம்தான் அணு உலைகளில் ஆற்றல் உற்பத்தி செய்யப்படுகிறது. இயற்கையாக கிடைக்கும் யுரேனியத்தில் 0.7 சதவிகிதம் யூ-235 ஓரிடமி உள்ளது. மீதமிருக்கும் 99.3 சதவிகிதம் யூ-238 ஓரிடமி நேரடியாக அணுப்பிளவிற்கு உதவுவதில்லை. எனவே ஓரிடமிகளை யூ-235 ஓரிடமியாக செறிவூட்டும் பணி நடைபெற வேண்டும்.

செறிவூட்டப் பணிக்கு பல செயல்முறைகள் கையாளப்படுகிறது. செறிவூட்டத்திற்கு யுரேனியம் குறைந்த தட்பவெட்ப நிலையில் வாயுவாக இருக்க வேண்டியது அவசியம். அதனால் சுரங்கத்தில் கிடைக்கும் யுரேனியம் ஆக்ஸைட் வேறொரு செயல்முறை மூலம் யுரேனியம் ஹெக்சாஃப்ளோரைடாக மாற்றப்படும். பரவலாக செண்ட்ரிஃபூஜ் எனப்படும் மைய விலக்கு முறையும் இந்த செறிவூட்டத்திற்கு பயன்படுகிறது. வாயு வடிவில் இருக்கும் யுரேனியத்தை சிலிண்டர்கள் போல இருக்கும் செண்டிரிஃப்யூஜில் போட்டு சுழற்றும் போது அது புவியீர்ப்பை விட ஆயிரமாயிரம் மடங்கு அதிக ஆற்றலை உருவாக்கும். இது தவிர செறிவூட்டத்திற்கு பல செயல்முறைகள் உள்ளன.

ஒரு சில ஆலைகளில் இயற்கை யுரேனியமே எரிசக்தியாக பயன்படுத்தபடுகிறது. உதாரணமாக, கனடாவால் வடிவமைக்கப்பட்ட கண்டுவிலும் ஆங்கிலேய வடிவமைப்பான மக்நொக்ஸிலும் இயற்கை யுரேனியம் பயன்படுத்தப்படுகிறது.

அணு ஆயுதங்களும் செறிவூட்டப்பட்ட யுரேனியம் பயன்படுத்தப்படுகிறது என்பது கூடுதல் தகவல். அணு ஆயுதங்களுக்கு உபயோகப்படுத்தப்படும் யுரேனியம் குறைந்தது 90 சதவிகிதம் யூ-235 உற்பத்தி செய்யும் ஆலைகளில் செறிவூட்டப்பட வேண்டும்.

அணு ஆயுதங்களிலும் செறிவூட்டப்பட்ட யுரேனியம் பயன்படுத்தப்படுகிறது என்பதாலேயே இது மிகவும் கவனத்துடன் கையாளப்பட வேண்டிய ஒரு தொழில்நுட்பமாகிறது. அணு ஆயுத பரவலை தடுக்கும் பார்வையில் பார்த்தால்,செறிவூட்டம் என்பது கடுமையான சர்வதேச நிபந்தனைகளுக்குட்பட்ட ஒரு தொழில்நுட்பம்.

உலக அளவில் செறிவூட்டம் தொழில்நுட்ப வசதி கொண்ட நாடுகள் ஒரு சிலதான். அவை அர்ஜண்டைனா, பிரேசில், சீனா, பிரான்ஸ், ஜெர்மனி, இந்தியா, ஈரான், ஜப்பான், நெதர்லாண்ட்ஸ், வட கொரியா, பாகிஸ்தான், ரஷ்யா, இங்கிலாந்த் மற்றும் அமெரிக்கா. பிரான்சிலுள்ள யூரோடிஃப் செறிவூட்டம் ஆலையில் ஈரான், இத்தாலி மற்றும் ஸ்பெயினுக்கு முதலீடுகள் உள்ளன.

சமீபத்தில் செறிவூட்ட தொழில்நுட்பத்தையொட்டி ஈரான் ஒரு சர்ச்சையில் சிக்கியது. அணு ஆயுதங்களை தயாரிக்கும் எண்ணத்துடன் ஈரான் செறிவூட்டத்தில் ஈடுபட்டதாக வந்த புகாரைத் தொடர்ந்து சர்வதேச நாடுகள் மற்றும் ஐநா சபை செறிவூட்டத்தை நிறுத்தும்படி ஈரானுக்கு அழுத்தம் தந்தன. தனது அணுசக்தி கொள்கை பற்றி ஈரான் சர்வதேச அரங்கில் தெளிவாகவும் நேர்மையாகவும் இல்லை என்று குற்றம்சாட்டப்பட்டது.

இந்த மாதம்தான் இந்த சர்ச்சை ஒரு முடிவை எட்டியது. ஈரான் சர்ச்சையின் பின்புலத்தையும் இந்தியாவின் செறிவூட்ட திட்டத்தையும் குறித்து விரிவாகப் பார்ப்போம். http://bit.ly/1e798fu

Climate fiscal framework on cards to coordinate use of funds

21 Jan, 2014

Syful Islam

The government is formulating a climate fiscal framework to coordinate spending in the climate change-related activities, official sources said.

The move is taken to ensure appropriate and effective use of funds in offsetting the impacts of climate change on Bangladesh, one of the countries most vulnerable to global warming.

Officials said presently a significant amount of money is being spent for different types of climate change-related projects. The government, non-government organisations, foreign sources, and even private households are also spending money in this connection.

They said since there is no coordination in the spending, repetition and duplication of projects is frequently occurring. Several bodies are embarking on the same types of projects, while many areas remain unattended.

Joint chief of the general economics division under the Planning Commission, Rafiqul Islam, told the FE that funds were being spent in a scattered way for offsetting the impacts of climate change.

“In the fiscal budget, funds are being allocated for climate change-related projects for almost all the ministries. There is no coordination in spending. We are formulating the climate fiscal framework to bring about coordination between them,” he said.

Once the framework is formulated and properly followed, agencies concerned would be able to know easily about how many and what types of projects are in place and how much money is involved with them, Mr Islam said.

He said countries like Cambodia and Indonesia have formulated climate fiscal frameworks.

Mr Islam also said changes have been brought to the format of development project proposal (DPP), in which the issue of climate change has been incorporated.

“While preparing a DPP for a project, it has to be mentioned from now on if any climate change-related components are there or not. That will help in keeping track on how much money is being spent in what types of climate change-related projects,” he said.

The climate fiscal framework is being formulated under a project titled ‘Poverty, Environment and Climate Mainstreaming,’ funded by the United Nations Development Programme.

Prof Dr Rezai Karim Khondker of Dhaka School of Economics, the team leader of the climate fiscal framework study, told the FE Monday that there was no calculation on how much money was being spent and from which sources.

The framework aims at coordination of the climate change-related spending, he said.

Mr Khondker said a large amount of money was needed to combat the impacts of climate change on Bangladesh, a low-lying country.

The framework will keep a tally of the sources of funds and also of where those are being spent for what purpose, he added.

Presently, Bangladesh Climate Change Resilience Fund (BCCRF) and Bangladesh Climate Change Trust Fund (BCCTF) are funding major climate change-related projects.

The BCCRF is a financing mechanism operated by the Government of Bangladesh (GoB), development partners and the World Bank to address the impacts of climate change. On the other hand, BCCTF is being solely financed by the GoB from public exchequer to carry out activities to offset the impacts of climate change.


Get ready for more “extreme” El Niños

Batten down the worldwide hatches. Scientists say baby Jesus’ meteorological namesake will become a thundering hulk more often as the climate changes.

The latest scientific projections for how global warming will influence El Niño events suggest that wild weather is ahead. El Niño starts with the arrival of warm water in the eastern Pacific Ocean, and it can culminate with destructive weather around the world. It was named by Peruvian fishermen after the infant Jesus because the warm waters reached them around Christmas.

Continue reading at Grist

A climatic dilemma

Are we too complacent in the face of visible change?

By Apsara Perera

Haiyan’s devastation as one the strongest typhoons ever recorded has left the world reeling in shock and the Philippines, as the country worst affected by the super storm, is slowly trying to get back on its feet again. During the same period as the typhoon,Sri Lanka too experienced heavy rains, winds, thunder and lightning and thus, it only seems fair to bring forward the oft posed question: is climate change to be blamed for it? If so, what can we do about it?

The climatic budget
With the Appropriation Bill having been taken up in parliament recently, let’s face the crucial question of how much of the annual budget is set aside for climate change related activities in Sri Lanka.




Tough questions, tougher answers

By Apsara Perera

Genetically modified (GM or GMO) foods, bio crops, biotech crops; call it what you will, these terms are among the words that have confused consumers with regard to what should be eaten and what should not. The concern does not end with the consumer. With
the effects of climate change being discussed in earnest, the time seems ripe for adaptation to take place, with research pointing in the way of the versatility of bio crops in
withstanding climatic conditions amongst others. However, with the backlash GMO foods have received in the recent past, this may not be a simple process as it seems.