In a recent seminar on climate change UN ex-Secretary General Ban Ki Moon has suggested setting up a global center for management of the climate change in Dhaka, the capital city of Bangladesh just to make it a demonstrative country, to educate others on how to combat climate change. Moon in his opinion also said that Bangladesh has already learnt how to do it effectively and it should take the leadership as its experience is too high due to its proper management in devastating cyclone, flood, and draughts almost every year. Since Bangladesh has learnt to live with natural calamity better than many countries who are bigger than itself, other countries should learn from Bangladesh the art of management of crisis created by emission of carbon di-oxide by the industrially developed countries.
In fact, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is the first global leader who, in Paris conference, gave her 5-point proposal including reducing carbon emission by the industrially developed countries. Her contention was that since the industrially developed countries emitted carbon di-oxide causing severe environmental degradation they must take the responsibility and come up with compensation to save the worst affected countries including Bangladesh due to climate change. The conference decided to inject fund in the Climate Change Management Fund. Unfortunately, the decision of the conference has not yet been implemented and the industrially developed countries are still unabatedly emitting carbon di-oxide as before. Some of them have refused to contribute to the Climate Change Fund and even withdrawn from the programme relating to this on the contention that the subject has not been properly dealt with. But, Bangladesh cannot remain silent. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina did never forget to raise the issue in the global forum relating to climate change. She has been persistently raising the issue whenever the subject has been taken for discussion not only on behalf of Bangladesh but also in favour of worst affected countries due to climate change as if she is the spokesperson of the affected countries. We have seen that while addressing such forum or conference she has strongly demanded for contributing to the Climate Change Management Fund as committed by the industrially developed countries in Paris conference. She has also urged the carbon di-oxide emitting countries to place fund for climate change in the annual budget. The fund for launching campaign relating to impact of climate change is inadequate. It is great news that Bangladesh has already started the job.
Bangladesh is one of the countries that are most vulnerable to climate change. As per expert’s estimates, one third of the country will be under water and 30 million people displaced from their homes if the sea level rises by one meter.
Considering disastrous situation due to climate change Bangladesh has launched Delta Plan 2100 to mitigate the adverse impact. The government will spend $37 bilion by 2031 to ensure food security and fight climate change related disaster, water security and efficiency of water usage, sustainable and integrated river systems. Delta Plan 2100 is a comprehensive framework which should be used as a check list when we design land planning, industrial strategy, manage water resources and adapt to climate change and so on.
Bangladesh is willing to cooperate
with the rest of the world to combat
the rise of CO2 emission. It is the UN
and other related organizations who
should come up with an action plan to
compel the greenhouse gas emitting
countries to reduce emission
Meanwhile, some of the industrially developed countries have really been affected by the adverse impact of climate change so much so that emergency has been imposed in those countries to combat the adverse impact. These countries are rapidly increasing the pollution that causes global warning to record levels despite having solemnly undertaken to reduce it. Emission of greenhouse gases has been affecting these countries also. Now, the global leaders have felt that it is no longer a lighter issue; rather it’s a serious one without addressing this the world may be a bad place to live in.
Since Bangladesh is prone to natural calamities like cyclone, tidal surge, flood, its people have learnt how to fight with nature for survival. Independence of the country has obviously created a situation congenial for having a government that really serves the people. The government ran by Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman immediately after independence and the government led by Sheikh Hasina for their absolute commitment to the people has done everything possible for its people. Since climate change has thrown a challenge to the people of Bangladesh the government of Sheikh Hasina has prepared its people to combat the natural calamities like cyclone, flood, and drought.
The reality in Bangladesh is that it is not the only country that has to fight with the nature alone. Many other countries of the world have been doing identical job for survival. It is the responsibility of the United Nations to see which country is being affected in what way.
Climate change today is a global phenomenon. None can escape the scourge that confronts the human life and living. The adverse impact has to be faced by different countries, over flooding and tidal surge is the problem in the Ganges basin.
The gift of nature is enjoyed by human population and even the animals. So, it is the responsibility of the human beings to protect the gift. The curse of nature has to be abided by them for ensuring better life of human beings.
In Bangladesh, a few decades back, we had to exclusively depend on the nature. Now, we know how to combat natural disasters. We know how to survive from the natural calamities and ensure better living, facing all odds. The globe is certainly aware about the greenhouse gas effect. They must come forward with taking effective measures to reduce emission of greenhouse gas (CO2).
Bangladesh produces little quantity of Carbon di-oxide as it is not an industrially developed country. But, the suffering caused by the emission of carbon di-oxide is so damaging that our existence may be at a stake if we are not conscious about it.
Bangladesh is, therefore, willing to cooperate with the rest of the world to combat the rise of CO2 emission. It is the UN and other related organizations who should come up with an action plan to compel the greenhouse gas emitting countries to reduce emission.
Dr SA Malek is former political adviser to the Prime Minister and Member of Parliament, general secretary of Bangabandhu Parishad and columnist.