Health impact of climate change in Bangladesh: a summary

Health impact of climate change in Bangladesh: a summary

Bangladesh, one of the South Asian countries , has started experiencing major public health i m- pacts of climate change due to its vulnerable geographical location. The objective of this paper is to look at the extent of climate change in Bangladesh and its impact on human health. This paper is based on the review of relevant literature and journal articles on climate change and health from varied recourses. Major health impacts of climate change in Bangladesh observed are temperature related illness, food, water and vector borne diseases. About 20 mill ion people in more than 27 districts are at risk of having Leishmaniasis. Human health is at serious risk due to climate change in Bangladesh though the country'€™s contribution to Greenhouse Gas emissions is very small compared to many developed nations. Unless steps are taken and put in place immediately to mitigate and adapt to climate change, Bangladesh will have to pay a heavy toll in terms of productivity and human lives.

Mitigation strategies need to be developed to reduce the impact of climate change through new policies, innovative technologies and a new life style. Introduction and use of renewable energy for industry and household use should be considered. Solar energy is a viable option for Bangladesh as the country is blessed with plenty of sunlight. Conservation of water sources and rainwater harvesting will benefit many sectors. River-encroachment and river-grabbing should be stopped by enforcing strict policies. Urban zoning laws can help reduce over-crowded pockets in larger cities, especially in Dhaka. Building and developing better facilities in rural areas will help prevent human migration to cities. Community -based solutions should be developed and implemented to make sure that people have a say in decisions affecting their well-being. Such approaches should also include various stakeholders and development partners from different sectors such as health, agriculture, environment, water resources and urban planning. It should also encourage public -private partnerships to monitor change, assess impact, facilitate adaptation and develop programs in order to face the challenge of climate change and develop holistic solutions.
 
Climate change is not only an economic issue but also essentially a health issue. It has profound implications for public health. Health must be at the centre-stage of any climate change related adapt action plans. Moreover extensive and vigorous research is needed to better understand the link between climate change and health. Unless steps are taken and put in place immediately to mitigate and adapt to climate change, Bangladesh will have to pay a heavy toll in terms of productivity and human lives.
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