Storm surges and coastal erosion in Bangladesh - State of the system, climate change impacts and 'low regret' adaptation measures
The effects of global environmental change, including coastal flooding stemming from storm surges as well as reduced rainfall in drylands and water scarcity, have detrimental effects on countries and megacities in the costal regions worldwide. Among these, Bangladesh with its capital Dhaka is today widely recognised to be one of the regions most vulnerable to climate change and its triggered associated impacts. Natural hazards that come from increased rainfall, rising sea levels, and tropical cyclones are expected to increase as climate changes, each seriously affecting agriculture, water & food security, human health and shelter. It is believed that in the coming decades the rising sea level alone in parallel with more severe and more frequent storm surges and stronger coastal erosion will create more than 20 million people to migrate within Bangladesh itself (Black et al., 2011). Moreover, Bangladesh’s natural water resources are to a large part contaminated with arsenic contaminants because of the high arsenic contents in the soil. Up to 77 million people are exposed to toxic arsenic from drinking water (Reich, 2011). Given that background, the current MSc thesis should collect indicators as well as assess and critically discuss the present and likely future state of the coastal system and establish strategies as well as solutions in regard to storm surges and coastal erosion effects in Bangladesh.
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