The Peoples Republic of Bangladesh established a separate dept. for the protection of environment. This dept. is named by the Dept. of Environment. After establishment of Dept. of Environment, this dept. work in many ways to protect the environment from the pollution. DoE is taken some effective measure to protect different kind of pollution; such as Air Pollution, Water Pollution, Land Pollution, Deforestation etc.
This research topic is “Activies of Department of Environment: An Assessment”. So here is discussed what is the function of the DoE and what measures to be taken for the protection to the Environmental Pollution.
Here is also discussed what measure should be taken to protect the Environment Pollution.
Limitation of the Study
“Activities of Department of Environment: An Assessment” is one of the most important topics for research in this present situation. I have tried my level best to collect recent and authenticated information for this research paper, but to prepare this research paper, I have faced some barrier concerning information. The main limitation to prepare this research is time limitation. The DoE is a large Dept. of the Peoples Republic of Bangladesh. The DoE is taking many measures in different places of Bangladesh. The Dept. discharges its responsibilities through a head office and six divisional offices located in Dhaka, Chittagong, Khulna, Bogra, Barisal and Sylhet. I only collect the data from the head office only. To make a full-fledge research the time period is not sufficient. Moreover there are some negligible problems to make this research fruitfully.
1.1. Department of Environment (DoE)
DoE means Dept. of Environment. The DoE is a Governmental Organization which deals with the matter of environment pollution, environment laws, conservation of the environment, give environment clearance certificate, etc.
The DoE is situated in Agargoan, Sher-e-Bangla Nagar, Dhaka.
The Govt. shall, for carrying out the purposes of the Bangladesh Environment Conservation Act, 1995 establish a Dept. to be called the DoE. The govt. shall establish a department for the purposes of this act to be called the department of environment which be headed by a Director General(DG). The govt. shall appoint the director general upon the term & condition of his service which is determined by govt. The govt. shall also appoint all necessary affairs & employers upon the term & conditions prescribed by rules1997.
The Department of Environment existing before the commencement of this Act shall be deemed to have been established under the act, and the Director General and other officers and employees of that Department shall be deemed to have been appointed under this Act.
1.2. History of DoE
The first environmental activities in Bangladesh were taken soon after the Stockholm Conference on Human Environment in 1972. As a follow up action to the Stockholm Conference, the Govt. of Bangladesh funded, under the aegis of the Dept. of Public Health Engineering and with a staff level of 27 and after promulgating the Water Pollution Control Ordinance in 1973, a project primarily aimed at water pollution control. In subsequent years, various events took place as described below.
In 1977, Environment Pollution Control Board with 16 members headed by a member of the Planning Commission and Environment Pollution Control Cell headed by a Director with staff complement of 26 was established. This was followed in 1977 by the establishment of the Environment Pollution Control Project, in 1985 by the establishment of the Dept. Pollution Control and finally, in 1989 by the restructured and renamed the DoE. Activities of which are overseen by a DG. The Dept. discharges its responsibilities through a head office and six divisional offices located in Dhaka, Chittagong, Khulna, Bogra, Barisal and Sylhet.
1.3. Objects of DoE
DoE’s mission is to help secure a clean and healthy environment for the benefit of present and future generations:
Through the fair and consistent application of environmental rules and regulations;
Through guiding, training, and promoting awareness of environmental issues; and
Through sustainable action on critical environmental problems that demonstrate practical solutions, and that galvanize public support and involvement.
1.4. Powers and Functions of the DoE
Powers and functions of the DoE is also regulated under the Act as well as the rules and regulations passed by the govt. The powers and functions of the dept. is described are as following:
1.4.1. Policy Analysis
Doe provides inputs to formulate environmental policy of the various sectors. It also analyses various policies of the govt. and advises the govt. on modifications of any section of a policy where needed.
1.4.2. Planning and Evaluation
DoE prepares a five-year annual development plan to fulfill central planning requirements. Periodical evaluation of progress of implementation of projects and the five-year plan.
1.4.3. Programme Coordination
Coordination between projects and programmers is conducted to ensure effective project planning and implementation.
1.4.4. Monitoring and Evaluation
On-going monitoring and periodic evaluation and reporting on the progress of project implementation.
1.4.5. Environmental Awareness
The Publicity and Environmental Awareness unit of the DoE is primarily responsible for creating awareness regarding the urgent need to preserve the environment among the general public using various local media, as well as educational and nongovernmental partners. The unit also produces and distributes educational brochures, posters, pamphlets and leaflets that are used in schools, workshops and training programmers.
The dept. organizes events to celebrate and promote a number of environmental awareness days like:
World Environment Day, International Ozone Day, World Desertification Day, etc.
1.4.6. Environmental Clearances and EIA Processing
As specified in clause 7 all new industries and projects must apply for an ECC. Industries are classified according to their potential impact on the environment into four categories: Green, Orange-A, Orange-B and Red.
Green categories are automatically granted for ECC. Orange-A categories must submit further information and plans, and may be subject to field inspection. The highly polluting categories Orange-B and Red in addition conduct a detailed EIA and prepare environmental management plans satisfactory to the Dept.
1.5. Powers and Functions of the DG
Director General(DG) may take such measures as he considers necessary and expedient for the conservation of the environment and improvement of environmental standards and for the control and mitigation of environmental pollution and he may issue necessary directions in writing to any person for the discharge of his duties under this Act.
The powers and function of the DG. The DG may take measures as the same which he consider necessary, expedient & thinks fit &proper for the
*Conservation of the environment
*Improvement of environmental standard &for
*The control & migration of environmental pollution
He may issue any direction is wiling regarding the discharge the duties of any person subject to provision of this act.
In particular and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power, such measures may include all or any of the following:
- Co-ordination with the activities of any authority or agency having relevance to the objectives of this Act.
- Prevention of probable accidents which may cause environmental degradation and pollution
- Giving advice or as the case may be issuing directions to the concerned person regarding the environmentally sound use, storage, transportation, import and export of a hazardous substance or its components.
- Conducting inquiries and undertaking research on conservation, improvement and pollution of the environment and rendering assistance to any other authority or organization regarding those matters.
- Searching any place, examining any equipment, manufacturing or other processes, ingredients or substance for the purpose of improvement of the environment and control and mitigation of pollution and issuance of direction or order to the appropriate authority or person for the prevention, control and mitigation of environmental pollution.
- Collection and publication of information about environmental pollution.
- Advising the Govt. to avoid such manufacturing processes, commodities and substances as are likely to cause environmental pollution.
- Carrying out programs for observation of the quality of drinking water and preparation of reports thereon and rendering advice or as the case may be issuing direction to the concerned persons to follow standards for drinking water.
A direction may include matters relating to closure, prohibition or regulation of any industry, undertakings or processes and the concerned person shall be bound to comply with such direction:
Provided further that, if the DG considers that due to a particular environmental pollution, the public life is likely to be in danger and that urgent action is necessary, he may immediately issue necessary directions. A time limit may be specified by the DG for carrying out a direction issued under this section.
Without committing any prejudice to the generality of the power mentioned is subsection1, all or any of the following mentioned measures may include.
Section 3 establishes the DoE, the operational body which is headed by a DG and such other necessary officers and employees as the Govt. may appoint in this regard. Actually, the DoE was established before the Act was passed. The Act simplify gives the retrospective effect of this body under it as it is understood from the contents of section 21. Section 4 sets forth the general powers and functions of the DG, which include: adoption of all necessary measures for the effective implementation of the objective of the Environment Conservation Act and other administrative issues. In addition, the DG can seek assistance of the law enforcing agency for proper carrying out his functions under the Act.
The DG or a person authorized by him may, for the purpose of exercising any power or performing any function under this Act, request any law enforcing agency, or any other Government or statutory authority to render necessary assistance, and upon such request that agency or authority shall render the assistance.
The govt. may when satisfied by the official notification declare an area as an ecologically critical which area or place is in an environmentally critical situation or which is measured to be such condition.
This section empowers the Govt. to declare an area facing environmentally critical situation to be an ‘ecologically critical area’, if it is satisfied that due to degradation of environment the ecosystem of the area has reached or is threatened to reach a critical state or condition. The Govt. is also empowered to specify which of the operations or processes shall be carried out or shall not be initiated in the ecologically critical area. Under this mandate, the MoEF, in a number of notifications has declared certain areas as ecologically critical area.
The remedy for injury to ecosystem, when a person or group of person does any act or omission which cause directly or indirectly injury to ecosystem & it appears to DG, he may determine the conversation &firstly direct to fale correchive measures or may direct measures & such person shall be bound to employ with the direction.
With information to the DG regarding environmental degradation or pollution. Any person may apply to DG for remedy of the damage or apprehended damage which he affected due to result of pollution or degradation of the environment. The DG may arrange a public heaving or other measures for dispose.
DG shall within 90 days from the receiving of an application subsection 8(1) dispose it.
The person responsible to take an immediate action in the case to control or mitigate the environmental pollution resulting from discharge of any environmental pollutant in even of the prescribed limit due to an accident or unforeseen incident.
The person in charge of the place at occurrence to inform immediately the D.G who will take necessary remdial measures to control such environmental pollution.
This section requires the person responsible to take an immediate action in the case to control or mitigate the environmental pollution resulting from the discharge of any environmental pollutant in excess of the prescribed limit due to an accident or unforeseen incident.
No civil or criminal case or other legal proceeding may be instituted against the Government, Director General, or any other person of the Department for any action which caused or is likely to cause injury to any person, if such action is taken in good faith under this Act or rules.
1.6. Environmental Clearance Certificate
Every industrial unit or project shall be established or undertaken by obtaining the environment clearance certificate under the presented by rules from the D.G.
The procedure of issuing environment clearance certificate which be classified. These are following as:
(1)Green (2)Orange-A (3)Orange-B (4)Red
1.7. Application for Environmental Clearance Certificate
The entrepreneur of the concerned industrial unit or project shall apply to the concerned Divisional Officer of the Dept. in Form-3 along with appropriate fees as specified in Schedule-13.
Department of Environment,
DhakaDivision/ ChittagongDivision/ KhulnaDivision/ Rajshahi Division (Bogra).
I do hereby apply for Environmental Clearance Certificate for my proposed industrial unit or project, or for the existing industrial unit or project, and enclose papers and furnish
Information as follows:
- (a) Name of the industrial unit or project:
Address of location of the industrial unit or project:
(b) Address of present office:
- (a) Proposed industrial unit or project
Expected date of starting construction:
Expected date of completion of construction:
Expected date of trial production in case of industrial unit, in other cases, date of starting operation of the project:
(b) Existing industrial unit or project:
Date of starting trial production in case of industrial unit, in other cases, date of starting operation of the project:
- Name of product and quantity to be produced (daily/monthly/yearly):
- (a) Name of raw materials and quantity required
(b) Source of raw material :
- (a) Quantity of water to be used daily :
(b) Source of water :
- (a) Name of fuel and quantity required (daily/monthly/yearly):
(b) Source of fuel :
- (a) Probable quantity of daily liquid waste :
(b) Location of waste discharge :
(c) Probable quantity of daily emission of gaseous substance:
(d) Mode of emission of gaseous substance :
- Mouza (village) map indicating “Daag” (plot)
number and “Khatiyan” (land tax account) number:
- Approval of Rajdhani Unnayan Katripakkhya/
Chittgong Development Authority/Khulna
Development Authority/ Rajshahi Development
Authority (if applicable).:
10.(a) Design & time schedule of proposed Effluent Treatment Plant:
(b) Fund allocated :
(c) Area :
- Process Flow Diagram :
12.(a) Location map of industrial unit or project :
1.8. Environmental Clearance Certificate
Steps Enclosed Document Time Outcome
2.1. Air Pollution
Air pollution is the accumulation of hazardous substances into the atmosphere that danger human life and other living matter.
Air pollution is the introduction of chemicals, particulate matter, or biological materials that cause harm or discomfort to humans or other living organisms, or cause damage to the natural environment or built environment, into the atmosphere.
The atmosphere is a complex dynamic natural gaseous system that is essential to support life on planet Earth. Stratospheric ozone depletion due to air pollution has long been recognized as a threat to human health as well as to the Earth’s ecosystems.
Air is the ocean we breathe. Air supplies us with oxygen which is essential for our bodies to live. Air is 99.9% nitrogen, oxygen, water vapor and inert gases. Human activities can release substances into the air, some of which can cause problems for humans, plants, and animals.
There are several main types of pollution and well-known effects of pollution which are commonly discussed. These include smog, acid rain, the greenhouse effect, and “holes” in the ozone layer. Each of these problems has serious implications for our health and well-being as well as for the whole environment.
The “air pollution” kills nearly 15,000 Bangladeshis each year according to Mr. Paul Martin, a bank environmental specialist in Dhaka 2001. This is released in the World Bank report saying Bangladesh could save between $200 million and $800 million per year. These amounts translate to about 0.7% to 3.0% of the gross national product if air pollution is reduced in just four major cities of Bangladesh.
According to Mr. M. A. Wahed of ICDDR-B; large number of children, homeless street children, local streetwalkers, and rickshaw pullers in the city of Dhaka pose a definite threat to the air pollution. Young children are mostly exposed to cadmium through inhalation of smoke and contaminated soil including dust from the industrial emission and sewage sludge.
Air Pollution contamination of the atmosphere caused by the discharge, accidental or deliberate of a wide range of toxic substances. Often the amount of the released substance is relatively high in a certain locality, so the harmful effects are more noticeable. The major sources of air pollution are transportation engines, power and heat generation, industrial processes and the burning of solid waste.
The Nation Health of 2001 noted that in the developing countries the World Health Organization (WHO) estimated about 700,000 deaths per year. These lives could be saved by preventing three major atmospheric pollutants of carbon monoxide, suspended particulate matter, and lead by bringing down to safer level. In the developing countries the health expenditure of urban air pollution was estimated to be about $100 billion a year during 1995. About $40 billion of this amount was accounted for the chronic
Recently as in other parts of the world air pollution has received priority among environmental issues in Asia. This problem is acute in DHAKA, the capital of Bangladesh and also the hub of commercial activity. The other urban areas like CHITTAGONG, KHULNA, BOGRA and RAJSHAHI have much lesser health problem related to air pollution. In urban areas sometimes the houses are built on rocks and SOILs, which radiate radioactive gas from their basement. If this gas is inhaled for a long time it may cause lung cancer. In the rural areas of Bangladesh, the air pollution problems have not yet become a point of concern. This is due to fewer motorised vehicles and industries there. However, brick kilns and cooking stoves are the principal sources of emission in rural areas. In villages wood, COAL, and biomass are used as sources of energy. Thus, it is likely that in those areas the principal air contaminants are particulate matter and volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
An air pollutant is known as a substance in the air that can cause harm to humans and the environment. Pollutants can be in the form of solid particles, liquid droplets, or gases. In addition, they may be natural or man-made.
Basically, there are two major sources of air pollution in Bangladesh industrial emissions and vehicular emissions. The industrial sources include brick kilns, fertiliser factories, sugar, paper, jute and textile mills, spinning mills, tanneries, garment, bread and biscuit factories, chemical and pharmaceutical industries, cement production and processing factories, metal workshops, wooden dust from saw mills and dusts from ploughed land, and salt particles from ocean waves near the OFFSHORE ISLANDs and coastal lands. These sources produce enormous amount of smokes, fumes, gases and dusts, which create the condition for the formation of fog and smog. Certain industries in Bangladesh, such as tanneries at Hazaribag in Dhaka City, emit hydrogen sulphide, ammonia, chlorine, and some other odorous chemicals that are poisonous and cause irritation and public complaints. This may cause headache and other health problems.
“Stationary Sources” include smoke stacks of power plants, manufacturing facilities and waste incinerators, as well as furnaces and other types of fuel-burning heating devices.
“Mobile Sources” include motor vehicles, marine vessels, aircraft and the effect of sound etc.
Chemicals, dust and controlled burn practices in agriculture and forestry management. Controlled or prescribed burning is a technique sometimes used in forest management, farming, prairie restoration or greenhouse gas abatement. Fire is a natural part of both forest and grassland ecology and controlled fire can be a tool for foresters. Controlled burning stimulates the germination of some desirable forest trees, thus renewing the forest.
Fumes from paint, hair spray, varnish, aerosol sprays and other solvents
Waste deposition in landfills, which generate methane. Methane is not toxic; however, it is highly flammable and may form explosive mixtures with air. Methane is also an asphyxiant and may displace oxygen in an enclosed space. Asphyxia or suffocation may result if the oxygen concentration is reduced to below 19.5% by displacement
Military, such as nuclear weapons, toxic gases, germ warfare and rocketry
A new source of air pollution is an increasing ‘hole’ in the ozone layer in the atmosphere above Antarctica, coupled with growing evidence of global ozone depletion. Air pollution has also long been known to have an adverse effect on human beings, plants, livestock and aquatic ecosystem through acid rain.
Some of the main contributors to air pollution are :
Combustion of coal
Noise pollution from cars and construction
With increased rate of urbanization in the country, the number of vehicles is also increasing rapidly, and contributing to more and more air pollution. DoE and other related organizations have identified the two-stroke engines used in auto rickshaws (baby-taxies), tempos, mini-trucks, and motorcycles as major polluters. At present, there are about 65,000 baby-taxies among them more than 296,000 motor vehicles ply in Dhaka City alone. Moreover, overloaded, poorly maintained and very old trucks and mini-buses are also plying the city streets emitting smokes and gases. In fact about 90% of the vehicles that ply Dhaka’s streets daily are faulty, and emit smoke far exceeding the prescribed limit. Diesel vehicles emit black smoke, which contain unburned fine carbon particles.
Following rapid industrialization the environmental scenario in Bangladesh changed dramatically. The Ministry of Environment and Forest and the Department of Environment were created in 1989 and the Environment Policy of 1992 was introduced. Further, the Environmental Conservation Act, 1995, and the Environment Conservation Rules, 1997, were approved by the Bangladesh National Assembly to restrict and mitigate ever-growing environmental problems in the country.
2.2. Effects of Air Pollution
According leading newspaper of Bangladesh, Swedish researchers gave details of the deadly heart attacks which may be more plausible problem among the people who spent decades living in heavily polluted areas. While there was no connection between peoples’ exposure to various pollutants over 30-year period and overall heart attack risk, such exposure did appear to be linked with a greater risk of heart attack. In particular, heart attacks often occurring outside the hospitals attributing to the air pollution have been reported by the colleagues of Mats Rosenlund of the Stockholm County Council. The researchers also established that people who had ever lived in “hot spots” pollution having particularly dirty air had
23% to about 40% increased risk of fatal heart attack. The health effects of short-term exposure to air pollution are fairly well understood but it is rarely clear how long-term pollution exposure affects health.
The health effects caused by air pollution may include difficulty in breathing, wheezing, coughing and aggravation of existing respiratory and cardiac conditions. These effects can result in increased medication use, increased doctor or emergency room visits, more hospital admissions and premature death. The human health effects of poor air quality are far reaching, but principally affect the body’s respiratory system and the cardiovascular system. Individual reactions to air pollutants depend on the type of pollutant a person is exposed to, the degree of exposure, the individual’s health status and genetics
An on-line forum called South Asia in 2001 mentioned that 6.5 million people in four large cities of Bangladesh suffer each year. Another at least 8.5 million cases have been observed with minor illnesses that did not require severe treatment. The major disease in Bangladesh is not diarrhea as often perceived.
The lead poisoning produces neuro-developmental disorders in children. About 50 tons of lead is emitted in the Dhaka air annually and the emission reaches its highest level in the dry season from November to January. Lead poisoning has been detected recently in children at the Shishu Bikash Kendro of Dhaka Shishu Hospital. Lead concentrations, measured around 80-micrograms/dl-to180 micrograms/dl in the tested children’s blood, is 7-16 times more than the acceptable limit. The safe concentration advocated by the US Centre for Disease Control and Prevention is 10 micrograms/dl. People living in urban slums have a significant rise in mean blood lead levels, compared to those living in urban middle-income or rural areas. The development of lead pollution could also affect the central nervous system, cause renal damage and hypertension. Excessive lead in the blood of children could damage-their brain and kidney. Children are three times more at risk than adults are by exposure to lead poisoning.
2.3. Measures Taken by DoE
DoE is taking some project for reduce the Air Pollution. DoE is taking a project namely
“Clean Air and Sustainable Environment (CASE) Project”. Which project is financed by the World Bank. The overall objective of the project is to catalyze the adaptation of Sustainable Environment Initiatives (SEIs) in key polluting sectors (urban transport and brick making) with a focus to abate air pollution and generate co-benefits through introducing energy efficient technology in brick sector and lay the foundation of introducing mass transit like Bus Rapid Transit in capital Dhaka. The specific objectives of the project are to strengthen capacity to plan, monitor, regulate and implement SEIs in transport and brick making industries, to reduce emissions from the brick making industry, to reduce congestion by improving traffic flows, to lay the foundation for reforming the existing bus operations and to introduce Mass transit such as Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) in capital Dhaka in line with Strategic Transport Plan (STP) of the government, to provide the institutional and regulatory underpinning for initiating bus sector reform and reduce vehicular emissions, to strengthen the institutional capacity to implement Sustainable Urban Transport (SUT) intervention, and to enhance the capacity to anchor the implementation of various project components.
DoE is taking another project for reduce these type of pollution. The taking project namely “Bangladesh Environmental Institutional Strengthening Project”. This project is financed by MoEF. The overall objective of the project is to increase the capacity for sustainable development in Bangladesh. The overall objective leads to two specific project level objectives:
- a) Strengthened capacity of the Department of Environment to implement their Strategic plan; and
- b) Strengthened capacity of civil society (including the private sector) for environmental management.
DoE has taken also another project to protect the Air Pollution. The project namely ‘Transition Strategy for the Phase-out of CFC in the Manufacturing of Metered Dose Inhalers in Bangladesh”. Main objective of the project is to assist the Government to phase-out CFCs in the manufacturing of MDIs to ensure compliance with Montreal Protocol commitments.The following are the specific objectives of the project:
- i) Implementation of conversion projects to phase-out CFC MDIs at Beximco, Acme & Square and Pharmaceuticals. For that Montreal Protocol Multilateral Fund approved US$ 2,776,788.00 implemented by UNDP separately.
ii)Regulation for health sector.
iii) Awareness on campaign and capacity building among stakeholders on adoption of CFC free alternatives. Holding seminar / workshop among doctor, nurses and pharmacists for smooth transition.
- iv) Design and implement monitoring and verification of Protocols to confirm and report on status of phase-out CFC free alternatives relating to project implementation.
DoE has taken also another project to protect the Air Pollution. The project namely “National ODS Phase-out Plan- UNEP Component”. Objective of the Project:
- i) To enhance capacity of the refrigerant servicing sector in recovery, recycle and retrofit through providing training to technician, supplying necessary machines and pilot retrofit programme.
- ii) To enhance capacity of workshops in retrofit of the car air-conditioning through providing training, supplying retrofit kits and pilot retrofit programme.
iii) Dissemination of information and technical know how to the stakeholders of all the relevant sectors using ODS through conducing workshops.
iv)To establish Project Management Unit (PMU) that will be involved in management of National ODS Phase-out Programme and monitoring.
Civilized people always feel the necessity of clean environment. But proper actions must be in place to assure clean environment. The atmosphere is under constant pressure from the green house gases that threaten to change the climate severely. The following measures can be reviewed effectively and then adopted or implemented by the respective authorities beside private sector to provide clean atmosphere for the future generation:
- Promote national energy efficiency and emission standards, and develop efficient, cost effective, and less polluting mass transit systems;
- Impose bar on importing leaded gasoline;
iii. Abolish 2-stroke engines and take steps to replace old and small vehicles by the large capacity
vehicles having 4-stroke engines;
- Restrict usage of the vehicles older than 20 years having severe exhaust fumes;
- Use proper lubricants that reduce emission levels and pollutants;
- Identify unfit vehicles via emission tests and introduce annual emission testing;
vii. Encourage people to use CNG or LPG, Rechargeable Battery driven vehicles, etc.;
viii. Immediate relocate/shift the Industries away from Dhaka city suitable to initiate industrial belt or parkway;
- Extend training to the physicians and relevant personnel for potential patients;
- Drivers of the vehicles require education on the reduction of emission;
- Introduce annual Seminar/Conference addressing detrimental effect of the pollution;
xii. Introduce proper disposition of the Industrial waste to avert degrading gases;
xiii. Create Public Awareness on Air Pollution through media such as videos, pamphlets, booklets,
etc. beside radio and television programs;
xiv. Modernize power systems or power generating sub-stations;
- Reduce fossil-fuel combustion;
xvi. Implement United Nations Framework Convection on Air pollution;
xvii. Save the forest and promote plantation within the city limits for ecological balance; and
xviii. Introduce ‘Strong Political Forum’ having agenda of saving the environment.
Water pollution is a prominent environmental problem witnessed across the globe. In some cases, water pollution occurs when pollutants drain into rivers, streams, lakes, and other bodies of water. Pollutants can be in the form of chemicals from fertilizers, pesticides, oil, gasoline, antifreeze, and even mulch or dirt. Sometimes rainwater washes the particles into the water bodies, as well. There are several preventative steps that can be taken to reduce water pollution. Water is one of the most fundamental needs for human beings. Man’s activities and development depend mainly on this vital substance. Economic development for the drinking, agricultural, industrial and services sectors require continuous water supply with the appropriate quality. Bangladesh is located in an arid and semi-arid area. The average annual rainfall in the Bangladesh is about 250 mm, which is about one third that of average world precipitation. Additionally, seasonal and local rainfall distribution in Bangladesh varies considerably, from 50 mm per annum in the eastern and central deserts, due mostly to flash floods, to more than 2,000 mm in the northern area.
Due to the circumstances mentioned above, Bangladesh faces water resources limitations, requiring water resources conservation and increased water efficiency in operations. The importance of water management has been recognized in Bangladesh for a long time and many traditional methods are commonly used in the operation of water resources Buriganga, one of the Regional conferences on water demand management, conservation and control.
Despite water resources limitations in our country for a long time, a combination of creativity and public participation has fulfilled water demands, but due to rapid population growth, the increasing trend in development, and agricultural and industrial development, water demands have increased in the recent decades. On the other hand, decreased available water per capita, and water pollution are threatening water resources quality. Therefore, promotion of modern management approaches and water pollution control and conservation in Bangladesh should be revised, even though using traditional approaches is inevitable. The Ministry of Energy (MoE), as the major authority in charge of water supply for different uses, has implemented a broad plan.
Water pollution is the introduction of chemical, biological and physical matter into large bodies of water that degrade the quality of life that lives in it and consumes it.
The water issue affects us all, and we all contribute to it. We are all downstream.
Bangladesh is a central point of reference for the injustice of climate change. Its per capita energy consumption is the equivalent of about one liter of oil per week, contributing a small fraction of 1% of global greenhouse gas emissions, yet the country is listed in numerous risk assessments as one of the most vulnerable in the world to the effects of climate change.
Rising sea levels threaten inundation and saline intrusion in the southern coastal region, the risk accentuated by prediction of greater cyclone intensity. In a climate pincer movement from the north, melting Himalayan glaciers may disrupt the flows of the three great rivers, first with excess flooding and eventually with diminished volume. Erratic monsoon patterns and longer periods of drought in the north complete the roll call of climate predictions for Bangladesh. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) warning that 20 million people will be forced to migrate from the Low Elevation Coastal Zone by 2050 relates broadly to occupation of land less than one metre above sea level. The estimate has been moderated to 6-8 million in the latest version of the Bangladesh Climate Change Strategy and Action Plan published in 2009. Conversely, some observers caution that the sea level is reported to be rising faster in the Bay of Bengal than elsewhere in the world.
Sewage of nearly 36 million people living in 19 Coastal districts directly or indirectly goes to the water systems (rivers) and eventually flows into the Bay of Bengal. In fact, none of the coastal cities have any proper sewerage system or sewage treatment plant in
place. All the urban cities are supported by septic tank and pit sanitation.
Poor households use community latrines. However, these systems are directly or indirectly connected to canals or rivers through surface drain of the city.
3.2. Effects of Water Pollution
Water demand is increasing day by day in our country. Due to water resources limitations, the possibilities of controlling water resources and increasing use efficiency are restricted. Therefore, management approaches are necessary for water resources allocation and for meeting water demands in different sectors. Competition between water users will be heightened by increasing demand for water and water services as well as the exhaustion of renewable water resources.
At present a major portion of water resources are allocated to agriculture. Existing agricultural allocations should be revised, due to rapid population growth, urbanization and industrial development.
The arsenic hazard in Bangladesh villagers now appeared as a ‘real disaster’, affecting thousands physically, physiologically, mentally and economically; it is intensifying malnutrition, poverty and destitution among the already poor villagers. The future of the Bangladesh villages are jeopardized. Arsenic contaminated underground water is one such severe problem which the government has failed to manage properly. Five years after the approval of National Policy for Arsenic Mitigation and Implementation Plan, two lakh people still face the threat of cancer annually due to drinking of arsenic contaminated water in Bangladesh, says a report of World Health Organisation (WHO).
Meanwhile non-consumptive operations such as energy generation and water allocation for environmental protection are also considered water users. Demand management is therefore a sustainable alternative for facing future problems.
Water resource pollution is due to increased water consumption and man-made activities, leading to new limitations on water operation for different uses. These limitations will either reduce available water supplies or decrease operational costs considerably.
3.3.Sources of Water Pollution
Some of the main contributors to water pollution are:
Waste treatment facilities
Pesticides, herbicides and fertilizer
Failing septic systems
Soap from washing your car
Oil and antifreeze leaking from cars
3.4.Measure Taken By DoE
Ministry of Energy has included two ongoing and valuable plans in the “3rd Development Plan” as follows:
- National standards for effluent reuse in accordance with local conditions.
- A methodology for effluent reuse in order to unify procedures.
All of the units that sell their effluents should control their effluents according to accepted standards,
by means of approved methods.
These boards should consider these waters in their water balance and allocate them regarding
environmental, technical, social and economical considerations. There are a few systematically case studies to use effluents in the Islamic Republic of Iranfor example in some areas, planning is so that the effluent from Wastewater Treatment Plants (WTPs) is used as irrigation water in the suburban farms, mainly for fodder crops such as corn, millet and alfalfa. So a lot of savings on water use and also fertilizer consumption can be seen due to nutrients in the effluents.
In spite of government’s activities to prohibit raw wastewater usage in irrigation and agriculture, we
can find farmers who use untreated wastewaters as a result of water shortage. At all water management levels, government has struggled to get more benefits from recycled waters. So it is supposed, this will be accomplished only by defining priorities in water use and by wastewater reclamation and reuse.
Educational programmes can play an important role in this activity.
The “Water Pollution Control Action Plan” is being implemented as soon as possible because of the seriousness of pollution from the following sources:
- Raw wastewater discharges from municipal and rural areas.
- Wastewater discharges from recreational centers (hotels, restaurants, etc).
- Solid wastes from populated and recreational areas.
- Agricultural and breeding activities and weed control.
- Abattoir activities.
- Motorized boat traffic.
3.4.1. Short-term Action Plans
The following are the short-term action plans for the control of water pollution in Teheran:
- Establishment of a committee with high ranking authorities of the Ministry of Energy, DOE,
Ministry of Health, Ministry of Interior and Ministry of Agricultural .
- Destruction of existing structures, governmental or private, constructed in the river basin beds.
- Prohibition of new construction and development activities (recreational, service, etc.) without
coordination with approved “Comprehensive Tourism Plan”.
- Cooperation between the Ministry of Energy and Ministry of Agricultural Jihad to transfer animal
husbandry operations located within water basin boundaries to outside the water basin.
- Cooperation between the Ministry of Energy and DoE to prohibit grazing of livestock, soil and
- Cooperation with Ministry of Agricultural Jihad to transfer abattoir activities to outside of the water
- Formation of a group in the Teheran Regional Water Board in order to collect and study required
information about existing populated and rural areas where sewerage systems cannot be
3.4.2. Change and Repair Broken Pipes and Leaks
Despite demand management, there is not a high potential in the water pollution sector for private sector investment, and only the government plays an important role in the supervision of investments. With respect to the “Third Development Plan” the government has taken serious steps in supporting water quality monitoring investments. The government has also developed the appropriate legal infrastructure for financial and personal support of water resources quality conservation and management and plans for the required annual budget. There are not only voluntary measures but also legislative approaches, which force the private sector into making water pollution control investments. All the private entities must implement their WTPs in order to get an activity permit from DoE. The effluents discharged from these units are controlled. If the effluents from units are greater than the effluent standard, they should pay penalties. The resulting income from these penalties will be spent on water pollution control and rehabilitation projects by the Ministry of Energy.
3.4.3. Sunlight Air Clay Pot Method
The principal objectives of the project are to introduce environmental consciousness education, cost-effective, efficient, user friendly and appropriate method of water purification, arsenic free water for the improvement of public health and overall protection of the environment.
3.4.4. National Environment Management Plan, 1995
The National Environment Management Action Plan (NEMAP, 1995), based on a nationwide consultation program identified the main national environmental issues, including those related to the water sector which EA practitioners should note. The main related national concerns included flood damage, riverbank erosion, environmental degradation of water bodies, increased water pollution, shortage of irrigation water and drainage congestion; various specific regional concerns were also identified.
3.4.5. Dhaka Environment and Water (DEW) Project
The Dhaka Environment and Water (DEW) Project is a US$ 70 million IDA credit under the MoEF. The objective of this 6 year demonstration project is to improve the quality of industrial effluent discharged in selected industrial sub-clusters into the greater Dhaka watershed using a technically and financially sustainable pollution prevention and abatement model. The DoE is responsible for implementing the monitoring and environmental compliance component. The Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) is responsible for implementing both the industrial pollution prevention and abatement program in 3 industrial clusters and overseeing the design, construction and operationalization of a common effluent treatment plan in one of these clusters.
Project Phasing: In order to enhance project design, maximize flexibility and maintain clear incentives, a programmatic approach will be followed in the project in two distinct phases over 6 years. The first phase will focus on setting the right incentives and institutional framework, through better monitoring and environmental compliance and pollution prevention demonstration programs. The on-going experience from the implementation of this first phase will be carefully monitored through a structured learning program in order to better design the demonstration CETP. The second phase, which involves the detailed design, construction and operationalization of the CETP, would only be initiated once key readiness criteria have been achieved (in Year 2-3).
3.5. Prevailing Situations
The DEW project is running now. In a few days ago DoE has arranged a press conference about this project and to knowing about present situation of this project.
Since the projects success will, in large part, also be a function of public pressure on polluters to behave more responsibly, the following activities also form an intrinsic part of project design: (i) information and awareness raising campaign on pollution costs and clean up options for all local stakeholders; (ii) collaborative monitoring of water quality, including involvement of local community in monthly monitoring of river quality / CETP effluent; (iii) establishment of grievance procedures within DOE; (iv) periodic public dissemination of water quality monitoring data; (v) national media led debates on pollution.
3.5.1. Water Recycling
A considerable amount of legislation has been developed in order to optimize water use and effluent
reuse as a new water supply. According to existing legislation, effluents are considered one of the eight main groups of water supply and as such, belong to the Ministry of Energy. The only existing standard regarding effluent reuse, “Effluent Standard”, defines allowable maximum discharges to surface waters, percolating pits and agriculture. Water recycling and reuse of non-conventional water and effluent are the main long-term strategies of our country’s water sector.
Environmental capacity assessment and staffing needs: Given DoE‟s limited capacity to implement its core regulatory functions, technical assistance will be provided to develop its institutional capacity in monitoring pollution and enforcing environmental compliance. In contrast, LGED is one of the leading government agencies who have incorporated environmental assessment within their project planning and is familiar with both IDA project implementation and Bank safeguard policies. Nevertheless, since this project is a category A and LGED has limited experience overseeing the establishment of wastewater treatment facilities, a full time international environmental specialist will be hired by the LGED PMU. Moreover it should be noted that both (i) the CP consultant firm hired under component 2 to deliver cleaner production audits and implement basic pre-treatment systems in factories and (ii) the CETP operator under the DBO contract will be required to have an environmental specialist on their teams.
In Bangladesh, ownership of water possession is with the government and the government rules water resources management. In recent decades many effective steps have been taken by the government to improve water demand management pollution control, and operational approaches.
Although legislative supports are essential, revision of some regulations is necessary too. New guidelines and procedures should be prepared. In spite of taking effective measures in water demand management of the agricultural sector, more serious cooperation is needed between Ministry of Energy and the Ministry of Agricultural, to improve the existing situation.
DoE possesses the main legislative tools for water pollution control and according to the “Third
Development Plan” (2000-2004) Ministry of Energy is responsible for water quality management
enforcement. Therefore, coordination between these two administrations is important for water pollution control. At present, cooperation between these administrations is being increased.
Considering the above-mentioned discussions, we believe that the water crisis and recent droughts
have highlighted the importance of water demand management and pollution control. In the end, some of the propositions to improve comprehensive management of water demand management.
3.5.2. Pollution Control and Conservation
- Enforce water resources conservation, demand management and effluent reuse in order to prevent
environmental destruction and help meet water demands.
- Establish national frameworks for optimized water allocation, and legalization of agricultural water
- Support agricultural water users’ guidelines development, water operation permits and develop
cultivation patterns in accordance with water resources capacity in different areas.
- Formulate evaluation system functions on operation and maintenance of water facilities in order to
prevent anomalous operations of water resources.
- Extend existing regulations, laws and criteria, and make them flexible, according to variations in
water supply and demand.
- Clarify the operation of water tariffs and other related services such as pricing, alongside
diversification of water sector financial supports. Set the prices so as to improve water demand
- Formalize the contribution of NGOs to develop public participation and change the operational
3.5.3. Avoid using salt to de-ice walkways
In colder climates, salting walkways and driveways is a common practice. It’s so common, in fact, that freshwater streams and lakes in these areas have been found to have extraordinarily high concentrations of salt–high enough to kill off fish and other aquatic organisms. Regularly and thoroughly shovel and/or sweep snow from your walkways instead of relying on salt, and sparingly apply non-toxic alternatives to salt to surfaces that need de-icing or extra traction. Examples of alternatives to salt include gravel and biodegradable, low-toxicity chemicals such as calcium magnesium acetate and liquid potassium acetate.
3.5.4. Minimize your use of fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides
The chemicals you spray or spread on your home, lawn, or garden don’t stay there. Traces of these poisons get washed into storm drains with rainwater or snowmelt. Multiply these small amounts by thousands of households, and the effects on watersheds and aquatic life can be catastrophic. Think twice before using these products, and consider alternatives (i.e. pulling weeds, living with a few bugs around the house, or using natural predators to control pests and organic methods to control weeds). Take an integrated pest management (IPM) approach to controlling undesirable organisms, and you often won’t have to use toxic chemicals at all. If you do need to use these chemicals, use only as much as you need; target their application, and don’t apply them right before rainfall is expected.
Water is a important element of environment. Man can not live without water. Animal also cannot live without water. So we don’t waste water and we also don’t pollute the water. We should to know how we can prevent to pollute water.
Some measures to Prevent Water Pollution:
The best way to prevent water pollution is to not throw trash and other harmful chemicals into our water supplies. Here are a few more ways you can prevent water pollution:
- Wash your car far away from any storm water drains
- Don’t throw trash, chemicals or solvents into sewer drains
- Inspect your septic system every 3-5 years
- Avoid using pesticides and fertilizers that can run off into water systems
- Sweep your driveway instead of hosing it down
- Always pump your waste-holding tanks on your boat
- Use non-toxic cleaning materials
- Clean up oil and other liquid spills with kitty litter and sweet them up
- Don’t wash paint brushes in the sink
4.1. Land Pollution
Pollution is the introduction of a contaminant into the environment. It is created mostly by human actions, but can also be a result of natural disasters. Pollution has a detrimental effect on any living organism in an environment, making it virtually impossible to sustain life. Pollution harms the Earth’s environment and its inhabitants in many ways.
Land pollution is pollution of the Earth’s natural land surface by industrial, commercial, domestic and agricultural activities.
Degradation of agricultural land has been significant all over the country. Nearly 3.5 percent of agricultural output is lost due to degradation of agricultural land. This is a significant cost for Bangladesh, which is working hard to improve the supply of food.
Small coastal islands- a large part of Bangladesh falls in the Gangetic delta. There are many coastal islands in this delta that are still growing in size, and some new islands are in the formation stage. However, it has been observed that in many cases human settlement in these islands have taken place before the soil has become stable.
To avoid catastrophic impacts in case of natural disasters and to help stabilize the soil, the government needs to develop a- policy on settlement in newly formed coastal islands. Considering this old tract of land is becoming semi-arid in recent years due to water shortages. As a result, the productivity of land in the Barind tract has decreased. The committee is pleased to note the works done by the Barind Multi-purpose Development Authority (BMDA) as an irrigation project. However, serious concerns have been made with regard to benefit sharing and the socio-economic impact of this project on poor ethnic and non-ethnic people living in the region.
4.2. Sources of land pollution
Some of the main contributors to land pollution are:
Chemical and nuclear plants
Oil and antifreeze leaking from cars
4.3. Effects of Land Pollution
There are many effects for the Land Pollution on Environment. It is obvious that during the construction period due to the excavation substantial quantity of the soil (solid waste) will be produced also other solid wastes due to human (working personnel) activities.
The impact due to waste disposal may be considerable in a waste water treatment plant during the construction period. The impact due to waste produced (soil) during laying of the collection net-work will produce considerable impact in the neighborhood.
The effluent discharge from the CETP to the receiving body of the water (river/khal) may cause potential health hazards in the vicinity of the discharge, exploitation of the receiving water, potential change in the flora and fauna and also cause decline in the land value. The discharge from a waste water treatment plant be it a industrial waste or municipal waste may cause potential health hazards in the vicinity of the discharge, exploitation of the receiving water, potential change in the flora and fauna of the water body and may cause decline
4.4. Measures Taken By DoE
4.4.1. Formulating the National Strategy on Waste Reduce, Reuse and Recycle (3R) for Bangladesh
This Project was financed by IGES and UNCRD. This Project started on March-2008 and this Project had been finished on April-2010.
The overall objective of the project is to formulate a National Strategy on the 3Rs (Waste Reduce, Reuse and Recycle) for Bangladesh to build a ” Second Material Recycle Society “.
4.4.2. Industry Pollution prevention and Demonstration Program
This project is financed by IDA. This demonstration program will be implemented by the Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) and will target mostly textile factories in the Washing, Dyeing and Finishing (WDF) sector, located in 3 industrial pollution hotspots. Approximately 70 factories in each of the clusters (200 in all) are expected to participate in the program. The objective of this component is to mobilize factories within a given cluster, raise their awareness of, and demand for, pollution prevention and abatement measures. A consulting firm will support the LGED with the roll-out of this comprehensive program: including information gathering, the establishment of industry cluster associations, cleaner production and pre-treatment measures. The estimated budget of the component is USD 20.6 million and the component has 4 subcomponents.
4.4.3. Waste Management
Waste management will become a major problem in all urban cities of Bangladesh. This is because of (a) increased pace of urbanization, (b) changes in the pattern of consumables by urban households and (c) insufficient capacity of waste removal by the municipalities and city corporations. Most municipalities also lack effective means to guarantee daily removal of wastes and overall there is a major problem of monitoring wastes. Estimates have shown that per capita garbage generation is near 0.5 kilogram in major urban locations in Dhaka (BBS, 1997). While 10 the municipalities and the city corporations are mainly responsible for disposal of garbage severe problems persists in removal of garbage for the following reasons:
Organic and inorganic garbage are not separated at source and so dumping of this
garbage in the landfill sites is becoming risky as the risk of groundwater contamination increases.
Some of the toxic and hazardous components of the wastes, particularly hospital and industrial wastes while mixed with household garbage increase the risk of spread of diseases.
Untreated liquid garbage once dumped into the open water bodies destroys the fish habitat and some of it toxic components may eventually go into the human food chain.
Collection of household garbage by the city corporations and the municipalities are insufficient and so a large percentage (often more than 50%) of the garbage is left on city streets. These eventually find their way into the city drainage lines and in the sewage system and are responsible for water logging in many cities.
However, some success in the collection of household wastes should be noted. These are mainly administered by local residents, organized local communities or associations, and also some NGOs. The success in this area should be capitalized and so efforts in one area should be duplicated in other areas. The Kalabagan method of waste collection from households and the work of Waste Concerns are some examples where private and voluntary institutions were successful in building up a ‘clean neighborhood’.
4.4.4. Cleaner Production Program
Factory environmental assessments will be provided to industries located in the designated industrial clusters. These factory audits will highlight areas for cleaner production options throughout the factory’s production line. Considerable savings (up to 40%) can be made in the quantity of energy, water and chemicals needed – which simultaneously reduce operational and pollution abatement costs. 15. Technical support will then be provided through matching grants to industries to make these low cost changes. Early adopters (typically consisting of some of the larger, more progressive factories) will act as demonstrators. Achievements by the earlier group will be communicated through a variety of means to their factory peers. A voluntary benchmarking system will be established to enable industries to compare their performance relative to their peers. The process improvement technologies under consideration for textile industries for this Project.
4.5. Laws & Regulations
The DoE makes some Laws & Regulations to protect Land Pollution. These are given mentioned below-
4.5.1. Industrial Policy, 2005
Several sections of the policy highlight the importance of environmental issues in industrial development.
“Provide all necessary assistance for producing environment-friendly product with the objective for creating a pollution-free environment in the industrial sector.”
“Arrange for incentives to be given for research and development, acceptance and transfer of environmentally friendly appropriate technology. At the same time, develop market-oriented institutional structure in overall technological development.”
4.5.2. Bangladesh National Building Code, 2006
Bangladesh National Building Code (BNBC) clearly sets out the constructional responsibilities according to which the relevant authority of a particular construction site shall adopt some precautionary measures to ensure the safety of the workmen. In a construction or demolition work, the terms of contract between the owner and the contractor and between a consultant and the owner shall be clearly defined and put in writing. These however will not absolve the owner from any of his responsibilities under the various provisions of this Code and other applicable regulations and bye-laws. The terms of contract between the owner and the contractor will determine the responsibilities and liabilities of either party in the concerned matters, within the provisions of the relevant Acts and Codes.
4.5.3. Acquisition and Requisition of Immovable Property Ordinance, 1982
Currently the only legal framework that governs land acquisition in Bangladesh is the Acquisition and Requisition of Immovable Property Ordinance, 1982.
The rules spell out the procedural details required for the acquisition of immovable properties in the following sub-heads:
- a) Proceedings for acquisition
- b) Notices under sections 3, 6, and 7
- c) Declaration of acquisition and possession
- d) Declaration of abatement and revocation of proceedings Transfer of acquired land
- f) Assessment of compensation, and
- g) Unutilized acquired property
In other words, when the pre-requisites are fulfilled, the step-wise activity of land acquisition process that has to be followed is given below:
▪ Submission of land acquisition proposal by the requiring body to the Deputy Commissioner.
▪ Holding District Land Acquisition meeting and providing land allocation.
▪ Serving Notice under Section 3 to the affected persons.
▪ Final approval of land to be acquired by the DC (for area of land 50 big has or less) or the Land Ministry (for area of land over 50 big has) on the basis of land area requirement.
▪ Serving notice under Section 6 to settle any dispute
▪ Estimation of jointly verified property for cost compensation and informing requiring body.
▪ Acceptance of estimate of cost compensation and placement of fund to the Deputy Commissioner by the requiring body.
▪ Serving Notice under Section 7 by the Deputy Commissioner to the affected land owners for disbursement of compensation.
▪ Disbursement of compensation as per estimate to the affected persons.
▪ Giving possession of land to the requiring body.
▪ CCL payment by the Deputy Commissioner.
The major decision taken by DoE to protect Land Pollution was banning polythene shopping bags in 2002. Polythene is directly caused for Land Pollution. So it is a very good decision to protect Land Pollution.
DoE also a decision taken to protect for Land Pollution is Hill Cutting Committee at many District. This committee has duty to save the Hill Cutting. The committee has also duty to make awareness about the people. But it is true that the Hill Cutting is not stopped. Hill Cutting is increased day by day. So the Govt. should be taken steps to protect Hill Cutting which steps will be efficient to protect the Land Pollution. The best way to prevent land pollution is to recycle.
Here are a few other ways to reduce land pollution:
- Reuse any items that you can
- Buy biodegradable products
- Store all liquid chemicals and waste in spill-proof containers
- Eat organic foods that are grown without pesticides
- Don’t use pesticides
- Use a drip tray to collect engine oil
- Buy products that have little packaging
- Don’t dump motor oil on the ground
Deforestation is the removal of a forest or stand of trees where the land is thereafter converted to a nonforest use. Examples of deforestation include conversion of forestland to agriculture or urban use.
The term deforestation is often misused to describe any activity where all trees in an area are removed. However in temperate mesic climates, the removal of all trees in an area—in conformance with sustainable forestry practices—is correctly described as regeneration harvest. In temperate mesic climates, natural regeneration of forest stands often will not occur in the absence of disturbance, whether natural or anthropogenic. Furthermore, biodiversity after regeneration harvest often mimics that found after natural disturbance, including biodiversity loss after naturally occurring rainforest destruction.
Deforestation occurs for many reasons: trees or derived charcoal are used as, or sold, for fuel or as timber, while cleared land is used as pasture for livestock, plantations of commodities, and settlements. The removal of trees without sufficient reforestation has resulted in damage to habitat, biodiversity loss and aridity. It has adverse impacts on biosequestration of atmospheric carbon dioxide. Deforested regions typically incur significant adverse soil erosion and frequently degrade into wasteland.
Disregard or ignorance of intrinsic value, lack of ascribed value, lax forest management and deficient environmental laws are some of the factors that allow deforestation to occur on a large scale. In many countries, deforestation, both naturally occurring and human induced, is an ongoing issue. Deforestation causes extinction, changes to climatic conditions, desertification, and displacement of populations as observed by current conditions and in the past through the fossil record.
There are many causes of contemporary deforestation, including corruption of government institutions, the inequitable distribution of wealth and power, population growth and overpopulation, and urbanization. Globalization is often viewed as another root cause of deforestation, though there are cases in which the impacts of globalization have promoted localized forest recovery.
In 2000 the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization found that “the role of population dynamics in a local setting may vary from decisive to negligible,” and that deforestation can result from “a combination of population pressure and stagnating economic, social and technological conditions.”
5.2. Effects of Deforestation
According to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change secretariat, the overwhelming direct cause of deforestation is agriculture. Subsistence farming is responsible for 48% of deforestation; commercial agriculture is responsible for 32% of deforestation; logging is responsible for 14% of deforestation and fuel wood removals make up 5% of deforestation.
The degradation of forest ecosystems has also been traced to economic incentives that make forest conversion appear more profitable than forest conservation. Many important forest functions have no markets, and hence, no economic value that is readily apparent to the forests’ owners or the communities that rely on forests for their well-being. From the perspective of the developing world, the benefits of forest as carbon sinks or biodiversity reserves go primarily to richer developed nations and there is insufficient compensation for these services. Developing countries feel that some countries in the developed world, such as the United States of America, cut down their forests centuries ago and benefited greatly from this deforestation, and that it is hypocritical to deny developing countries the same opportunities: that the poor shouldn’t have to bear the cost of preservation when the rich created the problem.
Experts do not agree on whether industrial logging is an important contributor to global deforestation. Some argue that poor people are more likely to clear forest because they have no alternatives, others that the poor lack the ability to pay for the materials and labour needed to clear forest. One study found that population increases due to high fertility rates were a primary driver of tropical deforestation in only 8% of cases.
Forest clearing has led to increased conflicts between wildlife and people. During a four-month period in 1997, elephants killed 30 people and injured over 100 as they sought food, which had become scarce due to forest clearing for agriculture. Subsistence agriculture is widespread in Bangladesh.
5.3. Measures Taking by DoE
The DoE has been taking many projects for prevent deforestation. These are mentioned given below-
5.3.1. Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation
Major international organizations, including the United Nations and the World Bank, have begun to develop programs aimed at curbing deforestation. The blanket term Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) describes these sorts of programs, which use direct monetary or other incentives to encourage developing countries to limit and/or roll back deforestation. Funding has been an issue, but at the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of the Parties-15 (COP-15) in Copenhagen in December 2009, an accord was reached with a collective commitment by developed countries for new and additional resources, including forestry and investments through international institutions, that will approach USD 30 billion for the period 2010 – 2012. Significant work is underway on tools for use in monitoring developing country adherence to their agreed REDD targets. These tools, which rely on remote forest monitoring using satellite imagery and other data sources, include the Center for Global Development’s FORMA initiative and the Group on Earth Observations’ Forest Carbon Tracking Portal. Methodological guidance for forest monitoring was also emphasized at COP-15 The environmental organization Avoided Deforestation Partners leads the campaign for development of REDD through funding from the U.S. government.
New methods are being developed to farm more intensively, such as high-yield hybrid crops, greenhouse, autonomous building gardens, and hydroponics. These methods are often dependent on chemical inputs to maintain necessary yields. In cyclic agriculture, cattle are grazed on farm land that is resting and rejuvenating. Cyclic agriculture actually increases the fertility of the soil. Intensive farming can also decrease soil nutrients by consuming at an accelerated rate the trace minerals needed for crop growth. The most promising approach, however, is the concept of food forests in permaculture, which consists of agroforestal systems carefully designed to mimic natural forests, with an emphasis on plant and animal species of interest for food, timber and other uses. These systems have low dependence on fossil fuels and agro-chemicals, are highly self-maintaining, highly productive, and with strong positive impact on soil and water quality, and biodiversity.
5.3.3. Monitoring Deforestation
The forestry department initiates and executes forest management decisions. In 1989 the government put a moratorium on tree felling and since has initiated a reforestation program. By 2012, Bangladesh aims to have 20 percent of its land under protection. As of 2003, the official figure was 0.5 percent of Bengladesh protected in one form or another. In the late 1990s the government established environmental courts to prosecute polluters.
Reducing and monitoring deforestation is a new chapter of this dense keywords lifetime. There are multiple methods that are appropriate and reliable for monitoring deforestation. One method is the “visual interpretation of aerial photos or satellite imagery that is labor-intensive but does not require high-level training in computer image processing or extensive computational resources”. Another method includes hot-spot analysis using expert opinion or coarse resolution satellite data to identify locations for detailed digital analysis with high resolution satellite images. Deforestation is typically assessed by quantifying the amount of area deforested, measured at the present time. From an environmental point of view, quantifying the damage and its possible consequences is a more important task, while conservation efforts are more focused on forested land protection and development of land-use alternatives to avoid continued deforestation. Deforestation rate and total area deforested, have been widely used for monitoring deforestation in many regions, including the Brazilian Amazon deforestation monitoring by INPE. Monitoring deforestation is a very complicated process.
5.3.4. Forest management
Efforts to stop or slow deforestation have been attempted for many centuries because it has long been known that deforestation can cause environmental damage sufficient in some cases to cause societies to collapse. In Tonga, paramount rulers developed policies designed to prevent conflicts between short-term gains from converting forest to farmland and long-term problems forest loss would cause, while during the seventeenth and 18th centuries in Tokugawa, Japan, the shoguns developed a highly sophisticated system of long-term planning to stop and even reverse deforestation of the preceding centuries through substituting timber by other products and more efficient use of land that had been farmed for many centuries. In 16th century Germany landowners also developed silviculture to deal with the problem of deforestation. However, these policies tend to be limited to environments with good rainfall, no dry season and very young soils. This is because on older and less fertile soils trees grow too slowly for silviculture to be economic, whilst in areas with a strong dry season there is always a risk of forest fires destroying a tree crop before it matures. In the areas where “slash-and-burn” is practiced, switching to “slash-and-char” would prevent the rapid deforestation and subsequent degradation of soils. The biochar thus created, given back to the soil, is not only a durable carbon sequestration method, but it also is an extremely beneficial amendment to the soil. Mixed with biomass it brings the creation of terra preta, one of the richest soils on the planet and the only one known to regenerate itself.
5.3.5. Sustainable practices
Certification, as provided by global certification systems such as PEFC and FSC, contributes to tackling deforestation by creating market demand for timber from sustainably managed forests. According to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), “A major condition for the adoption of sustainable forest management is a demand for products that are produced sustainably and consumer willingness to pay for the higher costs entailed. Certification represents a shift from regulatory approaches to market incentives to promote sustainable forest management. By promoting the positive attributes of forest products from sustainably managed forests, certification focuses on the demand side of environmental conservation.”
In the People’s Republic of Bangladesh, where large scale destruction of forests has occurred, the government has in the past required that every able-bodied citizen between the ages of 11 and 60 plant three to five trees per year or do the equivalent amount of work in other forest services. The government claims that at least 1 billion trees have been planted in Bangladesh every year since 1998. This is no longer required today, but March 12 of every year in Bangladesh is the Planting Holiday. It has introduced the Green Wall of China project, which aims to halt the expansion of the Gobi desert through the planting of trees. However, due to the large percentage of trees dying off after planting (up to 75%), the project is not very successful. There has been a 47-million-hectare increase in forest area in China since the 1970s. The total number of trees amounted to be about 35 billion and 4.55% of China’s land mass increased in forest coverage. The forest coverage was 12% two decades ago and now is 16.55%.An ambitious proposal for China is the Aerially Delivered Re-forestation and Erosion Control System and the proposed Sahara Forest Project coupled with the Seawater Greenhouse.In Western countries, increasing consumer demand for wood products that have been produced and harvested in a sustainable manner is causing forest landowners and forest industries to become increasingly accountable for their forest management and timber harvesting practices.
The Arbor Day Foundation’s Rain Forest Rescue program is a charity that helps to prevent deforestation. The charity uses donated money to buy up and preserve rainforest land before the lumber companies can buy it. The Arbor Day Foundation then protects the land from deforestation. This also locks in the way of life of the primitive tribes living on the forest land. Organizations such as Community Forestry International, Cool Earth, The Nature Conservancy, World Wide Fund for Nature, Conservation International, African Conservation Foundation and Greenpeace also focus on preserving forest habitats. Greenpeace in particular has also mapped out the forests that are still intact and published this information on the internet. World Resources Institute in turn has made a simpler thematic map showing the amount of forests present just before the age of man and the current levels of forest. These maps mark the amount of afforestation required to repair the damage caused by people.
5.3.7. Mangrove Aforestation Project
Like all over the world deforestation is also a matter of concern in the coastal areas of Bangladesh. It is reported by UNEP that the rate of degradation of mangroves is less as compared to the overall degradation of forests. Comparison of aerial photographs of mid eighties to early nineties shows annual destruction rate is over 2,000 ha. Factors responsible for the destruction of the mangrove forests are the removal of forest products for fuel, haphazard fishing activities, human settlement, salt production and shrimp farming. For example, the Chokoria Sundarban has totally been cut down (IUCN 2004). The coastal mangrove forest of Sitakundu is not that much degraded but most of the coastal plantations of Noakhali Forest Division are encroached by local people and the land grabbers. Encroachment in the newly accreted charlands is a major concern in our country. The coastal mangroves of Sitakundu have also been degraded. Anthropogenic factors are mostly responsible for those deforestations. More specifically, coastal shrimp farming, clearings for agricultural land, human settlements are the major driving forces for the deforestation. The deforestation in the coastal area frequently.
Exposed the coastal communities to natural calamities. This has resulted loss of lives and properties more than before. Say for example the 1991 cyclone in the Chittagong coast had resulted loss of at least 0.25 million lives2. Moreover, continued deforestation in the coastal area has increased the coastal erosion substantially. Also, productivity loss of shrimp and agriculture is also associated with the deforestation. All these have degraded the complex coastal environment and turn the coastal community vulnerable. Realizing the paramount importance of increasing the coverage of coastal mangroves, Government of Bangladesh initiated several programmes. Second Through these projects about 118,870 ha of newly accreted char lands have been planted with mangroves.
Deforestation is an alarming trend and a sever environmental threat, but it is not irreversible. Most people are not aware of how many solutions there are out there. Insight into the myriad of techniques available from the individual to the federal level, both domestically and internationally, is the first step anyone can take to getting our trees back and avoiding global catastrophe. The Department of Environment and the Ministry of Forest can take more effective measures to protect the deforestation. Suggest that government should establish strict policies for selection of trees for plantation should be backed by research and scientific evidences and not by whims.
Steps to protect deforestation are as follows-
Write to your Congressman pressuring him/her to declare any local dry or rain forest as national preserves, safe from business interests that through disregard would destroy our diminishing forests
Stop destroying forest for the sake of commerce, including villages or businesses
For every tree that’s destroyed, plant a new one
Promote public awareness: people all over the world need to recognize how close we are to losing wood and oxygen supplies
Call for teachers and schools in your community to educate students about the danger of deforestation so that our next generation will reverse the process
Call for stricter enforcement of existing laws, as according to research local, state, national and foreign governments tend to favor development and overlook existing laws
Non-timber forest products
Cut power consumption: use more efficient appliances, lighting, and other equipment to reduce the need for electricity
Plant fast-growing tree plantations
Arrangement of tree planting campaigns
In recent times, three important achievements have been made through the judicial court system regarding environment conservation. First, significant judicial recognition has been gained in environmental and public health matters. Second, the scope of the legal requirements, standing, or Locus Standi for an unaffected third party to initiate suits on behalf of the aggrieved people have been significantly broadened.
Until 1994 there was no reported case decided by the Supreme Court on environmental issues. The first case was filed in January 1994 by Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association (BELA) and since then the list is getting longer.
The judgments of the Court in these cases have addressed some vital legal questions. Following are the important environmental litigation decided in the court.
- Mohiuddin Farooque vs. Government of Bangladesh, WP 998 of 1994. and CA 24 of 1995 (1996.07.25) (Flood Action Plan Case).
The activities of FAP, FAP-20 and the FPCO adversely affected more than a million human lives and natural resources and the natural habitat of man and other flora and fauna and that they aroused wide attention for being allegedly anti- environment and anti-people project. BELA conducted investigations at various times in 1992-93 in the FAP-20 areas. No proper environmental impact assessment has been undertaken in relation to FAP projects even though the European parliament declared in its resolution of 24 June 1993 that there was urgent need of changing the FAP’s classification within the World the World Bank project scheme from category ‘B’ to category ‘A1 requiring full environmental assessment for projects which appear to have significant adverse effect on the environment. A group of environmental lawyers possessed of pertinent, bonafide and well-recognized attributes and purposes in the area of environment and having a provable, sincere, dedicated and established status is asking for a judicial review of certain activities under a flood action plan undertaken with foreign assistance on the ground, inter alia, of alleged environmental degradation and ecological imbalance and violation of several laws in certain areas of the district of Tangail.
In this case, the greatest environmental activist in Bangladesh, Dr. Mohiuddin Farooque tried heart and soul to materialize his wish of establishing environmental rights of the people of Bangladesh as well as save the affected people of Tangail. He argued that our constitution, in its Preamble as well as in the fundamental principles of state policy, enumerated that ‘absolute faith and trust and faith on the almighty ‘ Allah’ shall be the basis of all state actions. So it is the duty of every state organization to save the creature of Allah so as to show trust and faith on Allah. I think it was a unique argument to establish the environmental rights of the people of Bangladesh. The loss of biodiversity in the affected area of Tangail as well as the life which was threatened by creating economic problems to them was the prime concern of the case. It is no doubt that the project which was affecting the biodiversity by impeding natural water flow as well as imperiling the life line of fishes there affected the right to life of the project area. And it had a wide and longstanding impact on the biodiversity as well as environment of Bangladesh. So it was correctly said in the judgment that- ‘Although we do not have any provision like article 48-A of the Indian Constitution for protection and improvement of environment, articles 31 and 32 of our Constitution protects right to life as a fundamental right. It encompasses within its ambit, the protection and preservation of the environment, ecological balance free from pollution of air and water, and sanitation without which life can hardly be enjoyed. Any act or omission contrary thereto will be violative of the said right to life’.
- Farooque v. Government of Bangladesh WP 300 of 1995 2002.04.30) (Vehicle Pollution Case: Horn Specifications)
This case was about sound pollution.
This case was filed by the Petitioner Syeda Rizwana HassanJ Director (Programmes) and Member, Executive committee off Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association (BELA), a Society registered under the societies Registration Act 1860 seeking direction upon the respondents to take all adequate and effective measures to check pollution caused due to the emissions of hazardous smokes from. Motor Vehicles and the use of audible signaling devices giving unduly harsh, shrill, loud or alarming noise; and to take step within 8 weeks to activate the j centers with automatic computerized process that have already been constructed for giving fitness certificate so that unfit motor vehicles may not ply on the road.
It is a mandatory provision of Rule 114(d) of Motor Vehicle Rules that each transport Vehicle namely stage Carriages, which include private buses, P.R.T.C. buses, mini bus etc. cannot be fitted with any other form of horns excepting a bulb horn. But no transport vehicle owner follows such Rules. She further submits that use of shrill horns including air horns are polluting air of the city of Dhaka. Accordingly, she prays for a direction that the provision Of rule 114(d) of Bengal Motor Vehicles rules provides that every transport vehicle shall be fitted with a bulb horn.
The court, considering the matters in issue ordered the government to take adequate steps according to the statute.
- BEL A v. Government of Bangladesh and others (WP 851 of 2003) (Tannery Case)
The case was filed Failure to perform statutory public environmental duties on the part of the respondents and inordinate delay and negligence in arranging for relocation of the tannery industries/ units operating in the Hazaribagh area of the Dhaka Metropolitan City to combat the adverse effects of pollution caused by the tanneries in the Hazaribagh and surrounding areas under the Police Station- Lalbagh, Dhaka.
It was submitted that operation of the tanneries in the residential area of Hazaribagh and with no effective pollution fighting devices is continuing in flagrant violation of the legal provisions the Environment Conservation Act, 1995 (Act No.lof 1995), Environment Conservation Rules, 1997, Factories Act, 1965 and Town Improvement Act, 1953. It was stated that the statutory duty of the respondents to protect environment and environmental recourses to maintain and restore the same in a manner favorable to the objectives of the law and policy. The cumulative, synergistic and consequential effects of the said failures of the respondents have resulted in the denial of the fundamental rights of the people guaranteed under Article 32 and 32 of the Constitution and in other law of the land.
The court Issued a rule Nisi calling upon the respondents to show cause as to why they should not be directed to relocate, within a given time frame, the tannery units from the Hazaribagh area of the City to a suitable location/site as contemplated in the Master Plan prepared under the Town Improvement Act, 1953 and ensure that adequate pollution fighting devices are developed in the new location/site as required under the Environment Conservation Act, 1 995 and the Factories Act, 1 965 and the rules made thereunder.
- Farooque v. Governmeat of Bangladesh WP 891 of 1994
This writ petition was made after several investigations up and down the country to assess the improvement, if any, made in the ecology of the country by lessening the adverse effects of pollution caused by the huge number of industries/factories identified by the Government itself and specifically pointed out in the notification dated 7.8.1986 (Annexure-C to the petition) but in its utter dismay found no evidence as to any effective measure of legal action taken against any of the 903 industries/factories to curb their continuing discharge of the affluent and wastes into air and water bodies, rather, such pollution is” being continued unabated, uncontrolled and indiscriminately, not only by those industries/factories identified by the Government as mentioned in the list published in the Gazette notification dated 7.8 1986 but in many a new industries/factories sprung up since then and are severely polluting the environment and ecology endangering life and its support systems, thereby the respondents failed in performing their statutory duties and obligations cast upon them by the provisions of the Ordinance. As such, being aggrieved Late Dr. Mohiuddin Farooque on behalf of BELA obtained the instant rale. But he died during the pendency of the rule and Ms. Syeda Rizwana Hasan, Director (Program), BELA, has been authorized, by a resolution of the executive committee of BELA, taken on 30.6.2001, to represent BELA in the instant writ petition.
The environmental protection efforts in its post-industrial sense are of recent origin in Bangladesh, which can be traced to 1980s. Several developments took place in that period. First, a separate MoEF was created. Second many NGOs emerged with environment protection as their main goal. Third, some research and consulting organizations emerged with study of environmental issues as main focus. These developments took place in the backdrop of serious environmental degradation that Bangladesh was witnessing particularly beginning with the 1980s. the quality of urban air began to plummet. The problem of appropriate disposal of household, industrial and medical waste started to become acute. Forests, wetlands and open spaces began to disappear fast. Loss of aquatic and terrestrial bio-diversity became marked. The problem of arsenic contamination of ground water began to surface. It was natural that some sections of Bangladesh society felt alarmed by these disturbing trends and came toward with some plans and activities.
The Bangladesh Environment Conservation Act, 1995, together with the Conservation Rules,1997 and the Environment Court Act,2000 undoubtedly represents a milestone in the history of environmental protection laws in Bangladesh.
DoE has also adopted National Implementation Plan for Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants, 2001 National Bio-safety Framework under Bio-safety Protocol 2000 to the Convention on Biological Diversity, 1992.
The constraints of MoEF and DoE must be removed environment pollution because they were lawful authority to enforce the environment laws.
The appropriate judicial response and enforcement measure shall intensify the control efforts, Bangladesh being one of the developing counties must co-operate with the advance national in developing scientific and technological sophistication and using its legislative, judicial and executive organs to effectively curd the problem of global environment change.