2 August 2013
Six coastal districts of Bangladesh will benefit from a World Bank loan of $400m for upgrading the country’s embankment system to protect against climate change-induced flooding and other natural disasters.
The Coastal Embankment Improvement Project will strengthen 17 polders – areas of diked, tidal lowlands – to protect the coastal population from tidal flooding and cyclonic storm surges.
It is estimated that 760,000 people will get direct, increased protection by the rehabilitation work, but that a total of 8.5 million people living in the wider districts will benefit from related agricultural development, employment and food security.
People gather on a riverbank in Bangladesh to receive supplies from ships in the wake of Tropical Cyclone Sidr, 2007. (Credit: Sgt. Ezekiel R. Kitandwe/Wikimedia)
"Climate change is no longer only an environmental issue, it is a development issue," said Johannes Zutt, World Bank Country Director for Bangladesh and Nepal.
"Adaptation to increased risks from climate-induced weather events is essential for development in Bangladesh."
Bangladesh has over 580km of coastline and those who inhabit the coastal area – around 28% of the entire population – live below the poverty line.