Environmental Degradation In Rural Bangladesh Environmental Sciences Essay


Today, as people in developed states by and large enjoy a high criterion of life, at the other terminal of the spectrum, the hapless in developing states are fighting to do ends meet. 22 % of the population in developing states live on less than $ 1.25 day-to-day and 75 % of these people live in rural countries ( The World Bank, 2012 ) . This group of rural hapless are the greatest victims of environment debasement. In this essay, by looking at the instance survey of Bangladesh, we will acquire a deeper penetration into why the hapless puts great force per unit area on the environment. In bend, we will bring out why environmental debasement affects the hapless most badly ensuing in the support of environmental debasement. Thereafter, we will research some possible steps to assist developing counties like Bangladesh to interrupt out from the barbarous rhythm of poorness and environmental debasement.

Environmental effects of poorness

Although bulk of research workers have attributed poorness as a cardinal factor for doing environmental debasement, we have to observe that other factors such as net income motivations, and institutional failures are besides responsible for environmental debasement. Nevertheless unlike other factors, poorness and environmental debasement portions a alone relationship that causes them to reenforce each other in a barbarous rhythm. We would first look at how poverty causes environmental debasement.

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In Bangladesh more than 40 % of the population lives below the international poorness line and are vulnerable to nutrient insecurity and natural catastrophe ( Aid Effectiveness, 2009 ) . 85 % belong to the rural hapless ( Drakenberg, 2006 ) . Bangladesh faces a series of environmental jobs including deforestation, land debasement, air pollution, H2O deficit and taint, every bit good as loss of biodiversity. The hapless drama a critical function in act uponing these facets of environmental debasement.

First, poorness leads to deforestation. The bing natural woods in Bangladesh are diminishing at a rate changing from 2.1 % /year to 3.3 % /year ( Rahman, 2012 ) . This is due to development of forest resources for commercial logging, fuel wood aggregation every bit good as agricultural land enlargement. Commercial logging provides a feasible income for the hapless as the timber logs could be sold for hard currency. This pecuniary benefit could promote more trees to be felled ensuing in unsustainable deforestation. Bangladesh has a high birthrate rate, due to want for more kids to assist in the Fieldss and for societal support in old age. The turning population requires more trees would hold to be felled to supply fuel for their cookery demands. There will besides be a demand to increase nutrient production for the larger population doing big piece of lands of forest to be cleared and converted into agricultural land for turning of harvests. Deforestation, with loss of forest screen is responsible for dirt eroding and loss of fertile top dirt decreases agricultural productiveness.

Second, poorness contributes to set down debasement. Land debasement arises due to dirty exhaustion, salinization and desertification. Similarly, due to population growing with poorness, multiple cropping with a shorter fallow period was done to increase nutrient supply. To increase land productiveness, husbandmans use fertilisers, pesticides and weedkillers to a great extent. These methods of intensive land usage may be effectual in increasing agricultural end product in the short term. However in the long tally the dirt would bit by bit lose its foods, land is degraded and desertification creeps in. Though irrigation is helpful in guaranting stable H2O supply for harvests all twelvemonth unit of ammunition, mismanaged irrigation due to miss of cognition of rural husbandmans could ensue in contrary osmosis and accretion of salt ( Duraiappah, 1996 ) . This causes a recoil and dirt productiveness beads.

Third, poorness affects H2O resource. Irrigation reduces land H2O which may ensue in a H2O deficit if there is deficient H2O for the big rural population. In the north-western portion of Bangladesh, aquifer degree of land H2O was lowered when extraction of land H2O for irrigation is non adequately recharged and coupled with high rate of vaporization ( Mahbuba Nasreen, 2006 ) . Furthermore, Bangladesh faces job of H2O taint due to fertilisers and pesticide run-off from the farming areas. In 2002, more than the 65 % of the state ‘s population were at hazard of arsenic toxic condition. 61 of the 64 territories had arsenic degrees which were found to be above the national recognized criterion of 0.05 mg/litre ( Mahbuba Nasreen, 2006 ) .

Last, poorness contributes to air pollution. The hapless depend on biomass and firewood for fuel. The combustion of these fuels degrades the air quality and can do respiratory jobs. Although there are utility fuels which are less harmful to the environment, the hapless have yet to derive entree to them and may non be able to afford.

Furthermore, due to a deficiency of instruction, the rural hapless may non hold the cognition on how to protect their life environment. They extract more resources from the wood to run into the demands of the turning population, non taking into consideration the outwardness cost of resource loss since entree to the wood is free and unrestricted. To them, the immediate demands are of precedence and they do n’t be given to be after far for the hereafter due to the uncertainnesss of life. As a consequence, the hapless have no scruples about the unsustainable land usage patterns and deficiency vision for long-run optimum resource direction. This mentality is damaging to the long term sustainability of environmental resources and unplanned usage of resources is likely to ensue in environment debasement. The mentality of the hapless has led to loss of biodiversity where vegetation and zoology every bit good as wetlands are overuse. In Bangladesh, inland and coastal gaining control piscaries have declined and about 30 % of inland fish species have become endangered ( Drakenberg, 2006 ) .

Environmental debasement reinforce poorness

First, the rural hapless are most vulnerable to environmental debasement because they rely to a great extent on the delicate natural resources for their day-to-day life. 55 % of rural adult females work as husbandmans in the field, and they rely on the environment for fuel wood, nutrient and H2O. Desertification is damaging to the hapless as it affects their supply of basic demands from forest resources. Over extraction of H2O for irrigation leads to take downing of land H2O degree and H2O becomes salinized, doing a terrible deficit of imbibing water.In Bangladesh, rural adult females are responsible for roll uping fuel wood, H2O and nutrient for household ingestion from wood. Deforestation and H2O deficit causes shrink in nutrient and H2O handiness and adult females have to work harder and travel further to seek for resources. This digesting undertaking is demanding on their wellness and scarceness of nutrient could take to malnutrition ( Jahan, 2008 ) . The hapless being reliant on natural resources for basic demands and agricultural land for nutrient, is offered barely any nutrient security due to the delicate nature of the natural environment. When their agricultural land becomes less fertile due unachievable land usage patterns, the household ‘s income is drastically reduced ; the hapless remain in their barbarous rhythm of poorness and their basic demands and nutrition could be compromised.

Similarly near the coastal countries, the hapless rely on wetlands for gaining control piscary as their chief beginning of nutrient and income. With the devastation of wetlands for transition to shrimp cultivation country, it drastically reduces the vulnerable nutrient supply of the hapless and increased salt over coastal land endangers their wellness.

Second, environmental debasement affects the hapless most badly as they are the group that continues to populate in topographic points confronting land debasement as these polluted countries are cheaper to populate in. Bing unable to afford to travel to a better land, the hapless are exposed to Arsenic pollution from contaminated H2O beginnings ( Mahbuba Nasreen, 2006 ) . The World Health Organization ( WHO ) estimated that, 37 million people in developing states suffer chronic toxic condition due to exposure to toxic pesticides from working in Fieldss that use chemical fertilisers and pesticides extensively ( Jahan, 2008 ) . The hapless besides have to do make with cheaper beginning of fuel for cookery and warming. Burning fuel wood and droppings causes respiratory infections impacting adult females and kids, doing child mortality.

Barbarous rhythm of poorness and environment debasement

Beginning: Poverty and environment, 2000, Figure 9.2 Vicious Cycle of Poverty and Environment Degradation in Developing States, pp. 201.

As seen in the context of Bangladesh, husbandmans distressed by population growing and increasing poorness overexploit natural resources and widen cropping onto delicate fringy lands which consequences in a loss of sustainability and environmental debasement. Decline in agricultural productiveness on debauched lands so triggers poverty which in bend forced many husbandmans to go on degrading their land farther to pull out subsistence end product ( Duraiappah, 1996 ) . Overtime, this phenomenon creates the ‘vicious circle ‘ between poorness and environmental debasement as seen in the diagram above.

Urbanization further aggregative environmental debasement and worsen life of the rural hapless. Government may apportion more financess to back up the turning industry of technology, electronics and information engineering which would bring forth more income for the economic system ( United Nations ESCAP, 2010 ) . Conversely, the agribusiness sector would have less financess and work force is reduced with immature work forces traveling to work in urban countries. This leaves behind the aged and adult females to pull off the fringy agricultural lands. Urbanization causes air pollution from vehicular and industrial emanations, loss of biodiversity from human intervention to natural home grounds and deforestation which contributes to planetary heating. The hapless at the having terminal become victims to these jobs.

In many developing states, authoritiess by and large do non turn to the sustainability issues if there is small public force per unit area and they find no political wagess in heightening environmental quality. Nevertheless for developing states to accomplish environmental sustainability, support from the authorities is decidedly indispensable. As highlighted, the hapless are the biggest victims of environmental debasement ; conversely poorness can worsen ecological jobs. To guarantee long term environmental sustainability, possible steps needs to aim poverty relief and environmental direction.

Possible steps to accomplish sustainable development

Beginning: National sustainable development scheme, 2008, Figure 3.1 conventional representation of the vision, strategic precedence countries and cross-cutting countries, pp. 6.

In 2008, Bangladesh ‘s authorities came out with a national sustainable development scheme ( NSDS ) to steer the state towards relieving poorness and environmental jobs. As shown in the tabular array above, the scheme aims to accomplish sustainable development by guaranting sustainable economic growing, agricultural and rural development, societal security and environment direction ( DOE, 2008 ) .

Having sustainable economic growing means to speed up growing while guaranting environmental sustainability. Bangladesh strives to guarantee economic growing with higher private investing, increased influx of FDIs and effectual trade policies ( DOE, 2008 ) . It includes the agricultural sectors in the economic advancement by supplying them with electricity, roads, and telecommunications to better connectivity with urban countries. One possible way for sustainable economic growing is to advance investing in renewable energy beginnings such as solar energy, weave energy and hydroelectricity. Bangladesh has abundant sunlight twelvemonth unit of ammunition, air current and high energy moving ridges ; this can bring forth net incomes and cut down air pollution from fuel combustion ( M. S. Islam, 2011 ) .

Agricultural and rural development steps guarantee nutrient security for the turning population without doing environment debasement. Crop productiveness can be increase with agriculture variegation and improved engineerings. To cut down trust on irrigation and lower hazard of salinization, storage of surface H2O is enhanced and rainwater harnessed. To forestall omission of marine piscaries resource, fishing is regulated avoid over development. To heighten forest biodiversity, forest protected country could be extended and rural folks could be educated with cognition on sustainable resource usage ( DOE, 2008 ) .

Social security is achieved with sanitation, shelter and authorization through instruction. It involves proviso of lodging installations, clean imbibing H2O, electricity, medical services and guaranting nutrient security for all ( DOE, 2008 ) . Additionally, primary and secondary instruction is made available and compulsory for all, enabling authorization of the hapless.

Environment direction protects the environment and its resources. To pull off H2O deficit and taint, H2O preservation is encouraged and pollution beginnings are identified and managed. Loss of biodiversity is addressed by supervising unsustainable ingestion of biological resources. Besides, scientific and traditional cognition are to be integrated to efficaciously conserve the ecosystem. Most significantly, environmental sustainability considerations need to be integrated in policies refering forest, H2O, land, agribusiness, industry and energy ( DOE, 2008 ) .


As discussed, poorness and environmental debasement has close interlinks and reenforce each other. Poverty is a cardinal lending factor to assorted environmental jobs of deforestation, land debasement, air and H2O pollution, and loss of biodiversity. Consequently, environmental debasement has the greatest impact on the hapless, doing them to be of all time more vulnerable and holding to further degrade the environment to run into their basic demands and guarantee endurance. To accomplish sustainable development in developing states like Bangladesh, possible steps would hold to aim both poverty relief and environmental sustainability. Likewise these steps would work best if backed by strong authorities support and decently planed and organized. Bangladesh ‘s detailed NSDS shows a strong committedness to work out environmental issues and guarantee a better criterion of life for current and future coevals. However, it is still excessively early to find the effectivity of the schemes ; clip will state if Bangladesh is able to interrupt free from the barbarous rhythm of poorness and environmental debasement.

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