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Asia and Pacific at risk due to climate change: ADB and PIK report

The Asian Development Bank
(ADB) and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) predicts that
unabated climate change would bring the inhabitants of countries in Asia and
the Pacific to their knees, severely affecting their future growth,
reversing present development gains, eventually degrading the quality of life
in the regions.

The paper says Bangladesh has been subject to much focus in the
academic debate around climate migration, adding that the area around the Bay
of Bengal is one of zones in high risks due to climate change.

It harbours acute terrestrial vulnerabilities for its low-lying
property, and combined with the growing range of climate drivers and the high
population density, the peril hovers over a multitude of development sectors in
the small nation.

Firstly, despite the northern part of the country sitting at
altitudes up to 105 metres above the sea level, most elevations are less than
10 metres while the vulnerable coastal areas sink at sea level. The coastal
zones are populated by about 130 million people exposed to regular riverine

The report suggests climate change-influenced sea level rise
would force displacement of a huge population. An overall rise of four degrees
Celsius may see 13 percent loss of coastal lands to the sea, leading to
flooding of 20 percent more land than currently.

The reports adds that a 15 cm sea level rise by 2030 would lead to
3 percent of land loss and 6 percent of total flooded area increase while a 27
cm rise would cause 6 percent of land loss and 10 percent of flooded area
increase in the 2050s.

Bangladesh is a country with a big portion of its population drawing
livelihood and delivering goods through the agriculture sector.

Already witnessing drought-stricken summers, the surge in intensity of
the dry spells in regions would cripple the production of crops in ways
deadlier than the flooding.

The paper mentions that the nature of internal migration, which is
already happening with abandon, is a matter of disagreement among the

But it is generally accepted that multicausal nature of migration refers
to causal links between climate change impacts and migration is limited. But
there is no evidence to rule out the possibility of any links, as migration is,
after all, a primal method of adapting.

In Bangladesh, migration generally leads people closer to cities,
inflicting more centralisation to the capital Dhaka and other hubs – Chittagong
for the east and Khulna for the southwest.

It would cause the country’s already struggling efforts to establish
framework for sustainable development through local authority.

Cross-border migration to India and to a lesser extent Myanmar, on the
other hand, may be a common phenomenon, but it is far less common for this
method of population shift to be forced by environmental factors.



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Posted on : Jul 17, 2017