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Floods in Bangladesh: II. Flood Mitigation and Environmental Aspects

H. Brammer
The Geographical Journal
Vol. 156, No. 2 (Jul., 1990), pp. 158-165
Published by: geographicalj
DOI: 10.2307/635323
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/635323
Page Count: 8
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Floods in Bangladesh: II. Flood Mitigation and Environmental Aspects
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Abstract

The devastation and suffering caused by the Bangladesh flood disasters in 1987 and 1988 (described in Part I, GJ, March 1990) stimulated major Aid donors to examine possible ways to help the Government of Bangladesh find a lasting solution to the country's chronic flood disaster problem. A UNDP-funded flood policy study recommended the preparation of a National Flood Master Plan under which the Ganges, Brahmaputra and Meghna rivers would be embanked to provide controlled flooding on adjoining floodplain areas. Studies of river morphology, river training techniques, mathematical modelling, and land and water management with controlled flooding will be taken up in 1990 under an IBRD-coordinated Flood Action Plan. Alternatives to the embankment strategy considered by a USAID-funded team include upstream water storage in the Himalayas, basin storage on the floodplains and draw-down of groundwater beneath floodplains to absorb excess monsoon rainfall and run-off. A UNDP-funded Agriculture Sector Review advocated continued priority for small-scale irrigation development to increase crop production rapidly in the safer dry season. There is no evidence that environmental degradation in the Himalayas or a 'greenhouse'-induced rise in sea level have aggravated floods in Bangladesh.

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