`Don’t destroy the Sundarbans by unplanned development’ : Experts

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প্রকাশিত: ৩:১৭ অপরাহ্ণ, জুন ১৮, ২০২০ | আপডেট: ২:৫৭:পূর্বাহ্ণ, জুন ২২, ২০২০

The Mangrove forest Sundarbans may be destroyed if unplanned development, expert warns. They urged for a comprehensive action plan addressing nurture based solutions including public involvement.  

Speakers made the call on international climate talk on Thursday (18 June) jointly hosted by YouthNet for Climate Justice cooperation with Bhugol O Poribesh, an Indian environmental magazine.

Noted  Climate scientist Prof Saleemul Huq, The director of International Centre for Climate Change and Development, Independent University Bangladesh &  Environmentalist Prof. Malay Mukhopadhyay, Professor, Department of Geography, Visva-Bharati from West Bengal, India was the panel speakers of the webinar. Both of the speakers have addressed the problems and mentioned possible solutions that can be taken by mass participation of youth.

The main agenda was to address cyclone Amphan alongside climate crisis and vivid changes in mangrove forest Sundarban amidst COVID 19 Pandemic. Young climate activist Sohanur Rahman, Coordinator of YouthNet for Climate Justice has moderated the interactive session.

Dr. Saleemul Huq, Director, International Center for Climate change & Development

Prof Sallemul Huq said, “We are now at a critical point when we are building a bridge from Dhaka to the southwestern part of the country, connecting Khulna through the Padma Bridge. Once the bridge is constructed, you will see a lot of development in the Khulna region, which is a good thing. But, if we see the bad kind of development, that’s going to destroy the Sundarbans; that is a bad thing”.

“Development in the country was good, but it had come at a cost to the environment.  “We cannot continue to let that happen,” Prof Huq added.

Huq said the Sundarbans is our pride for two countries as well as was a world heritage site and “we all have a responsibility to preserve it”. He added, “One of the things we need to be thinking about is how to build the infrastructure that we need,” he said, emphasizing on nature-based solutions or green development”.

“If we don’t have regulations and policy, and more importantly, [if we do not] implement them, then we will end up destroying the Sundarbans. And I am very, very scared about that,” he told.

Prof Huq also emphasized on joint research-based execution while explaining Bangladesh Government announcement on planetary emergency being the first country in the world doing so to tackle climate crisis.

On the other hand, Prof Moloy Mukhopadhyay,  a Indian prominent environmentalist has described the changing factors of Sundarban’s remote area and emerging problems that have started to causing diverse effects on the lives of people over there. He also calls out a youth-led movement so that they can join hands with youth and bring a new set of the environment-friendly development system. He also emphasized reaching out global community as well as the central authoritative governments of two countries. Because it is about not only about our country rather its the whole planet that needs to be saved.

The webinar was started from the official page of YouthNet, on 12.00 pm till 2.00 pm while the discussion was not only descriptive rather there were participants and activists and general students who asked their queries to the panelist and our speakers answered them throughout the session.

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