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Bangladesh coastal population threatend by sea level rise

Posted by feww on April 14, 2008

Country in Focus: Bangladesh


Satellite image of Bangladesh (Photo credit NASA)

Geography

  • Land Area: 136,000 km² (US comparative: slightly smaller than Iowa)
    [Global rank by area: 94th]
  • Water 10,325 km²
  • Coastline: 580 km

Elevation extremes

  • Lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m
  • Highest point: Peak, the Mowdok range, 1052m

Most of the country is situated on deltas of large rivers flowing from the Himalayas: the Ganges unites with the Jamuna (main channel of the Brahmaputra) and later joins the Meghna to eventually empty into the Bay of Bengal (Source: CIA, The World Factbook)

Land use

  • Arable land: 55.39%
  • Permanent crops: 3.08%
  • Other: 41.53% (2005)

Map of Bangladesh (Source: CIA, The World Factbook)

Population

  • 2007 Estimate: 150,448,340
    [Global Rank by population: 7th]
  • Density: 1106/km²
    [Global Rank by population: 11th]
  • The population of Bangladesh rose from 75 million in 1971, to more than 150 million in 2007.
  • The population is still growing at an annual rate of about 2 percent.

Environmental issues
many people are landless and forced to live on and cultivate flood-prone land; water-borne diseases prevalent in surface water; water pollution, especially of fishing areas, results from the use of commercial pesticides; ground water contaminated by naturally occurring arsenic; intermittent water shortages because of falling water tables in the northern and central parts of the country; soil degradation and erosion; deforestation; severe overpopulation (Source: CIA, The World Factbook)

  • About 10 million people are threatened by annual floods and storms.
  • About 4,500 people were killed and at least two million were made homeless homeless as a result of two massive floods and a cyclone in 2007.
  • Extreme climate events destroyed about 2 million tonnes of rice, the country’s main staple, in 2007.


Ganges River Delta, Bangladesh and India (Image: NASA)

Bangladesh is threatened by

  • Climate Change
  • Rising population
  • Shrinking farmland


3/4 of Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, under water (2004)
Bangladeshi Children and adults move through flood stricken areas.

[Photo Credit: University of Alabama]

Related Links:

2 Responses to “Bangladesh coastal population threatend by sea level rise”

  1. Wes said

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