- Documents and publications
Climate change driven disaster risks in Bangladesh and its journey towards resilience
The article argues that disaster management plans need to adapt to the climate crisis and human displacement and reduce migrants’ vulnerability while responding to infectious disease transmission. This study focuses on Bangladesh, one of the most vulnerable countries with multifaceted hazard risks projected to intensify under climate change. Today, the scale of loss of human life from both rapid and slow-onset disasters (e.g. cyclone, flood and drought) is significantly lower than in the 1970s. This remarkable achievement was made possible by independence and the government’s proactive investment in development and societal changes through education, technologies and reduction in poverty and inequalities. However, the climate crisis is threatening these development and disaster risk reduction gains. In addition, disaster displacement is a major challenge.
This study finds that The COVID-19 pandemic has unveiled both strengths and weaknesses in global societies. Climate mitigation alone cannot protect millions of vulnerable people in Bangladesh who are likely to face catastrophic disasters through intensified natural hazard events. Countries like Bangladesh should focus on adaptation, technological solutions, global-scale collaboration, ongoing social transformation and enhancing their resilience to the emerging climate crisis. Disaster management plans need to be revised dynamically to assess how to adapt them to respond during a pandemic, considering the potential for infectious disease transmission. These plans need to address specifically the need to reduce the vulnerability of refugee, internally displaced and migrant communities whose numbers are likely to increase. Furthermore, strategies need to specifically address gender responses to hazard events and warnings. There will need to be substantial and continuing investments in early warning systems and disaster risk reduction infrastructure.