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Mainstreaming Adaptation to Climate Change in Coastal Bangladesh by building Civil Society Alliances

Bangladesh is one of the world’s poorest countries and is prone to a multitude of climate-related impacts such as floods, droughts, tropical cyclones and storm surges. The vulnerability of people living in the coastal zone has been demonstrated in numerous studies and is emphasised in the recent Third Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC, 2001). The subsiding coastal zone in Bangladesh is particularly vulnerable as it is affected by more than twice the mean predicted global rate of sea- level rise. The consequences are saltwater intrusion into surface and groundwater systems, drainage congestion and water logging, and changes in morphodynamic processes resulting in increased riverbank erosion. In addition, sea- level rise has the potential to make cyclones and coastal inundation even more damaging than they are today.

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