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Water Pollution Water is considered polluted when it is altered from the natural state in its physical condition, and chemical and microbiological composition, so that it becomes unsuitable or less suitable for any safe and beneficial consumption. The term contamination is used synonymously with pollution. The signs of water pollution are obvious: bad taste; offensive odours from lakes, rivers and sea beaches; unchecked growth of aquatic weeds in water bodies; decrease in number of aquatic animals in surface water bodies; oil and grease floating on water surfaces; colouration of water; etc. Besides these obvious signs, there are other kinds of pollution, which are not so visible. Sources of pollution Factories, power plants and sewage treatment plants are considered point sources of water pollution, because they emit pollutants at discrete locations, usually through a pipe that leads to a lake or STREAM. Nonpoint sources of water pollution are scattered or diffused. Cropland, FORESTs, urban and suburban lands, roadways, and parking lots are nonpoint sources of a variety of substances including dust, SEDIMENT, PESTICIDEs, asbestos, FERTILISER, heavy metals, salts, oil, grease, litter, and even air pollutants washed down from the sky by rain. Water pollution can also be categorised into natural and anthropogenic sources. Natural sources are those which take place without human influence. Anthropogenic pollution are those which are induced by human beings. Natural pollution can also be accentuated by human activities. Pollution takes place in all the three main sources of water, ie rain water, SURFACE WATER and GROUNDWATER. Surface water is more susceptible than groundwater, which is naturally protected from surface activities. Rainwater pollution Acid rain damages forests and may cause significant decrease in productivity. Numerous authors have also raised concern for crop damage. Acid rain is particularly damaging to buds; therefore, acids falling on plants in springtime may impair growth. Acidification of SOIL may also impair soil bacteria that play an important role in nutrient cycling and nitrogen fixation. Acid rain is also capable of corroding manmade structures. Examples of such corrosion are: the Statue of Liberty, the Canadian Parliament in Ottawa and Egypt's temple at Karnak. Acid rain may also damage house paint and etch the surfaces of automobiles. There is no record of acid rain in Bangladesh. However, due to extensive AIR POLLUTION in Dhaka city, it is very likely that rain water in Dhaka would be more acidic than rain water in rural areas. Surface water pollution Surface water occurs in OCEANs, rivers, lakes, ponds and floodplains. It has been the source of water supply since the dawn of civilisation. But intense human activities have been polluting these readily available sources. Surface water used to be the primary source of water supply in Bangladesh, but it is no longer the case. Surface water in Bangladesh is extensively polluted by sources such as industrial and urban wastes, agrochemicals and sewerage wastes and seawater intrusion. Surface water bodies are extensively used for disposal of untreated industrial wastes and this is one of the main sources of pollution. The BURIGANGA is a typical example of serious surface water contamination. Apart from industrial sources, surface water in the country is also extensively contaminated by human faeces as SANITATION in general is poor. Agrochemicals are extensively used in the country causing pollution of surface water. Due to withdrawal of water from the GANGES, seawater intrudes a long way inside the coastline which causes river water pollution by salinity. There are also other minor sources that contaminate surface water extensively.

Groundwater pollution Although groundwater is not directly exposed to surface polluting activities, numerous natural and anthropogenic activities cause groundwater pollution. A number of physical, chemical and biochemical (and microbiological) processes cause alteration of groundwater properties either by addition of new elements/ions/compounds or by increasing the existing concentrations. Before the discovery of arsenic contamination in Bangladesh, groundwater used to be considered a safer source of drinking water. Arsenic contamination of groundwater in Bangladesh is now considered the world's largest case of water pollution. Groundwater in Bangladesh is also polluted by a number of anthropogenic and natural sources. The most widespread anthropogenic sources are the infiltration of industrial and urban wastes disposed on the ground or in surface water bodies. Also intrusion or infiltration of saline water contaminates groundwater. Extensive use of agrochemicals can lead to groundwater pollution. Leaking sewers/septic tanks/pit latrines also cause groundwater pollution. [Kazi Matinuddin Ahmed] Bangladesh is located in Southern Asia (24 00 N, 90 00 E), bordering the Bay of Bengal for 580 km, Burma for 193 km, and India for 4,053 km. Slightly smaller than Wisconsin, the country comprises over 140,000 sq. km, 134,00 of which are land. Maritime claims include the contiguous zone (18 nm), the exclusive economic zone (200 nm), and the territorial sea (2 nm). The weather is cool and dry from October to March, hot and humid from March to June, and cool and rainy from June to October. The terrain is mostly flat; hilly in southeast with the lowest point at the Indian Ocean, and the highest point at 1,230m in Keokradong. Natural resources include natural gas, arable land, and timber. Natural hazards include droughts, cyclones; much of the country routinely flooded during the summer monsoon season. Many people being forced to live on flood prone land with limited access to potable water. Water borne diseases are prevalent. Water pollution is a big problem as a result of commercial pesticides. In addition there are intermittent water shortages, soil degradation, deforestation, and severe overpopulation Water Resources Management aims at managing the tasks required to generate water and produce water related goods and services for the benefits of the society as a whole. It includes physical intervention, related financial management, institutional arrangement, legislation, and regulations. Water Resources System (WRS) consists of various components of the natural system, human made infrastructure, and the institutional arrangements to regulate and control the availability and access of users to these components. In Bangladesh agriculture is the principal economic activity and the main user of water. Water also has domestic, commercial and industrial use. The in-stream flows and water storage support fisheries, forestry, navigation, pollution control, salinity control, nature conservation and recreational facilities. The natural subsystems of WRS of the country are: (a) the inter-linked system of rivers, estuaries, canals, khals etc; (b) the floodplain; (c) wetlands; (d) haors, baors, beels, lakes; (e) ponds; (f) inter tidal lands and water; and (g) groundwater aquifers Water management issues and challenges Water resources management in Bangladesh faces immense challenges of resolving diverse problems and issues. The most critical of

these are floods in the wet season and the scarcity of water in the dry season, ever expanding water needs of a growing economy and population, supply of safe drinking water and sanitation, arsenic problem, water pollution, massive river sedimentation and river bank erosion. There is a growing need for maintaining the ecosystems particularly in the fish resources and wetlands. The water management is increasingly facing challenges of exogenous developments of a global nature, such as climate change and sea level rise, as well as of upstream river basin development beyond the border of the country. Also there is the issue of competitive demand of various water uses. Major studies The most important reports/documents which have guided the government policy on the water resources sector are: (i) Water and Power Development in East Pakistan: Report of United Nations Technical Assistance Mission, 1957 (Krug Mission Report); (ii) East Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority Master Plan 1964 (EPWAPDA 1964 Master Plan); (iii) International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) Review of EPWAPDA 1964 Master Plan, 1966; (iv) Land and Water Resources Sector Study, Bangladesh, IBRD, 1972; (v) National Water Plan PhaseI, MPO, 1986; (vi) National Water Plan Phase-II, MPO, 1991; (vii) The Flood Action Plan, FPCO, 1989-95; and (viii) The Bangladesh Water and Flood Management Strategy FPCO, 1995. The Krug Mission Report, 1957 was a product of a study on flood control and water management in East Pakistan after the disastrous floods of 1954, 1955 and 1956 that drew world attention. The most significant recommendation of the report was to create a new government corporation with comprehensive responsibilities and authorities to deal with all water and power development problems. Following the recommendation, East Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority was created in 1959. The EPWAPDA 1964 Master Plan was designed to meet the agricultural demand of water through large-scale public sector development and water management in both dry season (irrigation) and wet season (flooding). The Master Plan identified 63 water development projects and grouped them according to geographic locations. Major outcomes of the plan were the initiation of the process of national level water sector planning and the eventual implementation of large-scale Flood Control Drainage (FCD) and Flood Control, Drainage & Irrigation (FCDI) projects including the protection of most coastal zones against tidal flooding. IBRD Mission reviewed the EPWAPDA 1964 Master Plan in 1966 and the report agreed with the general principles regarding the importance of flood control, drainage and irrigation. The report, however, expressed reservations on the suggested strategy and specific proposals of the plan. The IBRD review of 1964 Master Plan played an important role in taking decision by many donor agencies for not to finance large, complex and long gestation schemes. IBRD Report on Land and Water Resources, Bangladesh, 1972 emphasised the need for quick results from water development efforts to achieve food grain self-sufficiency. It attached high priority to small and medium sized, simple, low cost, labour intensive projects. Such schemes would involve low embankments and gravity drainage. It also proposed low lift pump irrigation and tubewell irrigation. The government, however, did not accept the study as a whole but its water development strategy was greatly influenced by its findings and recommendations.

The National Water Plan (NWP) was formulated in 1986 by the Master Plan Organisation (MPO) created in 1983. In its first phase, the NWP identified 15 modes of development for the water sector with analysis in four major categories such as FCD (flood control, and gravity drainage), irrigation (major and minor irrigation), FCDI (flood control, drainage and irrigation), and additional modes. The investment priorities set by NWP included (a) minor irrigation schemes such as low lift pump (LLP), shallow tubewells (STWs); (b) major irrigation schemes (FCDI); (c) deep tubewells (DTW); and (d) flood control and drainage scheme (FCD). Master Plan Organisation prepared the National Water Plan Phase-II in 1991. It updated NWP-I with a detailed investment programme and a list of projects. The 20-year (19912010) public investment programme gave more emphasis to FCD. Although the government did not formally accept the NWP reports, the NWP had in its two phases, made important contributions to the knowledge and understanding of the water resources of Bangladesh. The NWP data provided the basis for subsequent water sector planning. After the disastrous floods of 1987 and 1988, the attention of the government of Bangladesh, as well as its development partners was once again focussed to floods in the country, especially in its urban areas. The Flood Plan Co-ordination Organisation (FPCO) was created in 1989 and it undertook 26 studies under a common umbrella known as the Flood Action Plan (FAP). Noteworthy among the features of FAP were (a) the attention to urban FCD and non-structural flood proofing, though agriculture remained the main focus of regional plans; and (b) emphasis on social and environmental impact, effect on fisheries, and people's participation in flood control and water management. The report titled "The Bangladesh Water and Flood Management Strategy (BWFMS), 1995" was a follow-up to FAP and became the working policy document for the water sector that presented a framework for the development and implementation of specific programmes in water sector. It recommended a 5-year programme involving (a) preparation of National Water Policy; (b) preparation of a national water management plan; (c) strengthening of water sector organisations responsible for planning, construction, operation and maintenance; and (d) implementation of a portfolio of high priority projects. Policy on Strategic framework The government declared the National Water Policy (NWPo) in 1999. The six national goals of the NWPo were economic development, poverty alleviation, food security, public health and safety, a decent standard of living for the people, and protection of the national environment. The other related government policies that have direct bearing on water sector are the National Environment Policy 1992, National Forestry Policy 1994, National Energy Policy 1996, National Policy for Safe Water Supply and Sanitation 1998, National Fisheries Policy 1998, National Agriculture Policy 1999, and Industrial Policy 1999. Water Rights and Laws Ownership of surface and groundwater rests with the state. There are many legislation relating to water sector, some dating back over a century. The list includes the Irrigation Act 1876, Embankment and Drainage Act 1952, Bangladesh Water and Power Development Boards Order 1972, Irrigation Water Rate Ordinance 1983, Groundwater Management Ordinance 1985, Water Resources Planning Act 1992, Environment Conservation Act 1995, Water Supply and Sewerage Authority Act 1996, Environment Conservation Rules 1997, Environment Court Act 1999, Bangladesh Water Development Board Act 2000, and Urban Water Body Protection Law 2001.

International treaties and protocols In 1996, Bangladesh and India signed a thirty year agreement regarding sharing of the Ganges water. This is the only existing agreement between the two countries regarding sharing of the water of their 54 common rivers. Bangladesh is a signatory to the following international protocols which has implications on environmental aspects of water resources: (a) Agenda 21, the 1992 Rio Convention on Biological Diversity; (b) the 1971 Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, applies in Bangladesh to the Sundarbans and parts of the Haor Basin (Tanguar Haor), the only such sites at present in Bangladesh; (c) the 1973 Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora; (d) the 1972 Convention on the Protection of World Cultural and Natural Heritage Sites; (e) the 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change; (f) the 1954 International Convention for Prevention of Pollution of the Sea by Oil; (g) the Marine Pollution Conventions; and (h) the Basel Convention on Hazardous Wastes. Institutional setting At present, the agencies or organisations which have relevant functions in water sector are of four categories: (a) government agencies; (b) local government institutions; (c) other organisations and the private sector; and (d) development partners. The government agencies include 13 ministries and 35 organisations, the most important among which are the Ministry of Water Resources, Bangladesh Water Development Board, Water Resources Planning Organisation (WARPO), Joint Rivers Commission, River Research Institute, Surface Water Modeling Centre, Bangladesh Haor & Wetland Development Board, Ministry of Agriculture, Bangladesh Agricultural Development Corporation, Ministry of Local Government, Rural Development & Cooperatives, Local Government Engineering Department, Department of Public Health Engineering, Dhaka Water Supply and Sanitation Authority, Chittagong Water Supply and Sanitation Authority, Ministry of Environment & Forest, Department of Environment, Ministry of Ports, Shipping & Inland Water Transport, Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority, Ministry of Fisheries & Livestock, Department of Fisheries, and Disaster Management Bureau. The local government institutions are the Paurashava (municipalities) and the Parishads (councils, mainly the upazila parishads). The category 'Other Organisations & Private Sector' includes community based organisations, non-government organisations, cooperatives, and private sector organisations and institutions. Noted among the development partners are the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, and the United Nations Development Programme and numerous bilateral development agencies of countries such as Netherlands, Denmark, Japan, UK, and Canada. Participatory water management The National Water Policy directed that "Stakeholder involvement should be an integral part of water resources management at all stages of the project cycle". Stakeholder institutions (water users group) were established within FCD areas of BWDB, based on drainage blocks or chawks. LGED, DPHE, Barind Multipurpose Development Project also formed water user groups in different names. The institutional framework in which the local stakeholders are to participate is known as the Water Management Organisation (WMO) comprising the Water Management Group (WMG), Water Management Association (WMA) and Water Management Federation (WMF). WMOs are registered under the Cooperative Societies Act 1986. Water sector projects and interventions The traditional approach to water resources system management in Bangladesh has been based on structural interventions in flood

control, drainage and irrigation. Recently increasing emphasis is given to other kinds of management interventions such as flood warning system, flood proofing and adopting responses to hazardous conditions. Following are the different types of direct water sector interventions implemented in the country:Rural FCD inland and coastal embankments and polders; regulators; small-scale FCD; river training, bank protection and river dredging.Urban FCD town protection schemes, embankments, regulators, pumps etc. Minor/small-scale irrigation public sector force mode tubewells (both deep and shallow), rubber dams; and khal re-excavation.Major/large-scale irrigation pumps, irrigation canal network, drainage canal network, barrages, etc.Flood proofing homestead raising and construction of flood refuges.Flood warning systems flood/disaster forecasting and warning, preparedness and management. Water supply and sanitation piped water supply using both surface and groundwater in big cities, sanitation services in big cities etc and hand tubewells for drinking water in rural areas. Dredging augmentation of river flows and for navigation purposes. Cyclone protection embankments, cyclone shelters etc. Hydropower generation embankments, dams, river training, power house etc. National Water Management Plan (NWMP) The draft NWMP was prepared by WARPO in 2001. The plan is to be updated every five years. The plan identified 84 programmes, which are grouped both into eight sub sectoral clusters, as well as eight planning regions. The eight sub clusters are the Institutional Development, Enabling Environment, Main Rivers, Towns and Rural Areas, Major Cities, Disaster Management, Agriculture and Water Management, and Environment and Aquatic Resources. The eight planning regions are South West Region, North East Region, North Central Region, Northwest Region, South Central Region, South East Region, Eastern Hills Region, and Rivers & Estuary Region. Priority is given to the institutional development, enabling environment, and water supply and sanitation. The estimated investment cost of the plan over 25 years is Tk 91,457 crore ($18 billion). [HS Mozaddad Faruque] Bibliography Ministry of Water Resources, National Water Policy, Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh, 1999; EGIS, Guidebook for Integrated Water Resources Management: Concepts and Tools (Draft Version), Dhaka, 2001; Water Resources Planning Organization (WARPO), Draft Final National Water Management Plan, Vol-1 & 2, WARPO, Dhaka, 2001. Bangladesh has approximately 10,000 kilometres of embankments constructed to protect the inland from cyclone, tidal surge and flood. The embankments are maintained by the Bangladesh Water Development Board (BWDB), a government agency. A study has shown that there are approximately 3.5 million poor families living illegally on those embankments. The settlers are considered harmful for embankment maintenance There is a 250-km long embankment in Bhola island with around 70,000 poor settlers living on it The cost of maintaining this embankment is very high but it could be reduced substantially if these settlers are utilised as a positive force. The land on both

sides of the embankment could be used for income generation of the settlers. The concept is that if the settlers are given usufruct rights, they will maintain the embankment. The government can thus save huge money on the one hand, and the settlers will improve their socio-economic condition on the other. This was conceived of as Sustainable Embankment Maintenance Pilot Project (SEMPP) in Bhola Irrigation Project (BhIP) of BWDB supported by the Asian Development Bank (ADB). COAST piloted the project at 119-128 Km. Point in Char Manika in the southern coastal belt of Bhola island during June 1996 - December 1997. Direct fund and other support have been withdrawn. The programme has now been integrated into the COAST mainstream. The project was evaluated by an external consultant at the end of 1997. The findings of the action research are available in a report entitled Embankment Maintenance and Resettlement of the Desititute : Learning from Self An Interview with Scientific Officer of Bangladesh Fisheries Research Institute Hilsha Fishery In Bangladesh Md. Anisur Rahman is Scientific Officer of Bangladesh Fisheries Research Institute (BFRI) at Chandpur Riverine Station. He looks after Fish Population Dynamics and Open Water Management. In a recent interview with the Isles and Actions, he gave much valuable information that follows &A: What is the reason behind the recent service hilsa crisis? AR: If the hilsha exploitation level is minimum 0.5, the condition is tolerable Since 1991 the exploitation rate has increased severely. For example, it was 0.52 in 1991, 0.55 in 1995, 0.56 in 1996 and it became 0.57 in 1997. This shows a rising trend. The exploitation rate is increasing at the rate of 0.1 each year on the one hand, and the excessive killing of jatka is severely affecting natural recruitment on the other. In 1993, the quality of jatka killed was 3,707 metric tons and now it is 6,000 metric tons. So, it is clear that the rate of hilsha exploitation is increasing. The confluence of these two effects has affected the total hilsha population. I&A What can be short and long-term remedies? AR: There are both short-and long-term remedies. The short-term remedies are jatka in the major nursery grounds in both inland and coastal areas during peak abundance should be protected; berried and pregnant hilsha should be allowed to spawn unhindered, and replenish the wild stock in the major spawning grounds during their peak spawning period of September-October, particularly during the seven days of full moon; and the indiscriminate catching of hilsha from spawning and nursery ground must be totally stopped. The long-term remedies are to establish bio-reserves (Iiish Ovoyarnnya) for both juveniles and adults, undertake research programmes on the migration and artificial breeding, development of larval rearing technique and adaptation of hilsha in large captive waters, and also to identify potential sources of population and environmental degradation &A: What can be the measures for the government and non-government agencies to minimise jatka-killing?AR: The government can establish a proper system to monitor the effect of ban on jatka and gravid hilsha fishing, modify the present conservation rules, ban all nets having mesh size smaller than 9.0 cm., strengthen the coastal vigilance, and educate the fisherman community.NGOs can create awareness about various negative impacts on jatka-killing through training and demonstration source of income for the

fishermen, provide them with loans to buy equipment and resort to alternative fishing and undertake collaborative research and monitoring with the government. I&A: What is your opinion about the recent trend of migratory routes of hilsha fish? How is it hampering the existing hilsha productivity in our country? What can we do to increase the productivity? AR: Well, there is a lack of research on migratory route. I am not able to make any sure comment. But we observed over the last few years that the mogratory route of hilsha is being diverted to the sea gradually. It may be because of excessive gathering of vessels, huge wastage of trace fish, grabage disposal of the foreign ships, sea pollutation and other forms of environmental degraduation. Perhaps the fish habitation has been spoiled and hilsha has chosen the deep rather than shallow habitation. If hilsha does not migrate so large in number, and if they do no come up to the spawning ground, this means the reproduction cycle will not be completed. Now you yourself imagine its impact.A number of things can be done to increase the productivity. First, options for hilsha migration such as fish passages locks should be commissioned where it is needed, and their efficacy needs to be tested. Second, the migration of adult and juveniles needs further in-depth study. Third, it is necessary to find and establish the migratory route through experimental fishing, tagging, etc. Finally, the ban on the erection of all sorts of fixed engine nets, behundi jal, jagot ber jal, etc, along the migratory route of the hilsha during the winter lean water situation has to be executed. 3.5 Million Poor Based on the findings, COAST and Proshika's Institutue for Development Policy Analysis and Advocacy (IDPAA) coorganised a national workshop on 22nd April 1998 at CIRDAP auditorium in Dhaka. The workshop was attended by Minister for Water Resources Abdur Razzak as chief guest. Secretary to the Water Resources Ministry ATM Shamsul Huda and other government officials, Officerin Charge of ADB Resident Mission in Dhaka Francis B. Narayanan, donors and NGO leaders also participated. ADAB Chairperson and Proshika President Dr. Qazi Faruque Ahmed presided over the inaugural session while COAST Chairperson and Oxfam Representative Tahera Yasmin Haq presided over the other. The workshop recommended wider replication of the project in the coastal belt of Bangladesh to facilitate sustainable embankment maintenance and poverty alleviation of the hard-core and rootless settlers. Based on the workshop recommendations, COAST later carried out the following activities : mailing of 500 postcards by the group members to the Water Resources Minister and Secretary, requesting inclusion of the project concept in national water policy; participation and lobbying in the process of national water policy preparation; sharing of key experience and dissemination of the project finding among all NGOs; preparation of a project for a nation-wide survey on land available in the coastal area with permission from BWDB; meeting with Secretary to the Water Resources Ministry to issue a 'suomotto' circular that there will be no bar to BWDBl and availability by the poor groups in lieu of embankment maintenance by NGOs; and lobbying donors to accept the SEMP concept

Abdur Razzak Minister Ministry of Water Resources After the 1970 cyclone, Father of the National Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman addressed a huge gathering at the "Zero Point" of Dowlatkhan Thana in Bhola district and made a declaration to build cross-dams around the island to save the people from tidal surge. The then Awami League government also promised to rehabilitate 70,000 embankment settlers of the district. It is a primary condition to raise awareness and ensure the participation of people in the maintenance of embankments. Through people's participation, the maintenance of the embankment could be made cost-effective and the supervision of the maintenance activities could also be strengthened. I want to focus on some positive sides of this pilot project of COAST. In a study on SEMPP, it has been noticed that through people's participation the embankment maintenance cost could be reduced remarkably. A BWDB estimate shows that maintenance cost per kilometre of embankment is Taka 17,000 but it will reduced to Tk. 600 only through people's participation. Maintenance activities will also be regular and its quality will be increased. It will be possible to address the causes of damages of the embankments through building people's knowledge of maintenance. I believe that this model project will also be effective for rehabilitating the homeless. ATM Shamsul Huda Secretary Ministry of Water Resource We leased them (settlers) land at the foot of the embankment. Without giving them money, we asked them to work for embankment maintenance, cultivate land and plant fruit trees; and in turn, they would look after the embankment. Now a project should be taken for these people so that they can settle on the embankment. They will have incomegenerating activities there and in return, they will maintain the embankment. Now through people's participation the government( as it is unable to maintain so many staff members) has to work in co-operation with NGOs. Water Technologies Global warming is a fact. Climate changing in the recent years causes floods, hurricanes and heavy storms in some parts of the World while in other parts- droughts and even shortage of potable water. Some countries in Africa are on the verge of starvation caused mainly by the droughts and shortage of water. Low quality of water cuts life expectancy and raise medical expenses in Africa, Asia and other regions.This Phenomenon puts the issue of water to the top interest of the World- organizations like the UN, World Bank, countries, technology developers, academia and of course the private sector- the water industry.We, at the Israel Export Institute, decided to give priority to water technologies in our promotion programs. Israel is one of the countries with a permanent water shortage and therefore is in the front edge of water related new and advanced technologies. Drip irrigation, which was developed in Israel, is a good example of an invention that has changed the philosophy of irrigation by enhancing higher yields with much less water. Our life and health, and the harmonious existence of mother Earth, are entirely dependent on water. It delivers oxygen and nutrients to different parts of our body and also removes

toxins and waste.Unfortunately for most people, water also has lost its magic because it is so universal we take it for granted. We have simply stopped thinking about it, let alone appreciating it. The availability of water at the turn of a tap have distant us from the crystal clear bubbling water of natural springs, the reflective water of mountain pools, or the deep water of an ancient well. Our modern demands and water recycling processes using ‘cleansing chemicals’ have effectively neutered its essence and vitality. Instead of revering its once sacred nature, we have gradually allowed water to become degraded and dirtied. Exploited, manipulated and polluted, this fountain of life has become one of the great channels for transmitting illness...
Water Pollution Is Threatening the Total Health Balance

"What You Do Not Know About Your Tap Water May Be Killing You Silently..." Common Drinking Water Problems Chlorine

Chlorine affects the metabolism of fat and hormonal activities. It inhibits the actions of certain enzymes and may inhibit recovery in some illnesses. Some people are allergic to it. Chlorine has been known to be associated with heart disease.


Ordinarily found in our water from pipes and hot water tanks. High levels may cause seriouslong-termhealthproblems.

Commonly added to water as a ‘public service’ to prevent tooth decay. Controversy has surrounded this practice as large amounts of fluoride can weaken the immune system andcausegeneticdefects.

Herbicides, pesticides containing carbon tetrachloride, lindane and atrazine may leach into water from farming practices, and nitrates leach into the water as residues from fertilizers. All these chemicals may cause a variety of health problems and birth defects.


Waterborne parasites such as Cryptosporidium and Giardia are not always effectively removed by conventional water treatment plants which cause diseases and gastrointestinal disorders.

Dangers Of Your Water’s "Memory" Water has a memory like an elephant.

It means that water has the ability to transfer information to our body once it has obtained it from its previous course. When we drink poisonously charged water, we are actually courting diseases and illnesses into our bodily systems. Around the world, water is often chemically & mechanically “purified” with the intention of ridding the water of as many poisonous substances as possible. For instance, when we take a look at the limits for nitrate, they might be pretty harmless to adults, but to infants, they can be very dangerous. Water is an information carrier. Poisonously charged water is often polluted with substances such as lead, cadmium, nitrate & an impressive variety of other detrimental substances from households, agriculture & industry. All of this water can be chemically treated with the purpose of purifying the water and eliminating bacteria etc, but after the water treatment has “purified” the water as far as the “science of yesterday” is concerned, the water still carries certain electrical frequencies, oscillations in specific frequency bands (wavelengths). They can be tracked precisely to those detrimental substances which were detected in the water before treatment. Even after treatment & purification of water, it still contains certain unwanted signals from the poisonous substances. It is not only the chemical substances which affects the body when we drink the water, there is also the undesirable frequencies. Water, which has once being exposed to pollutants is considered dead. Even the most intensive & modern sewage treatment facilities cannot revive it. It is energetically dead and it contains no useful information. Biologically valuable water must contain certain useful frequencies in order for the human organism to benefit from it. One should avoid drinking water that is biologically ‘dead’ as they are detrimental to your health.
Contrary To What You Think, Boiling Your Water Is A BAD Idea!

Chlorination has become the universally practiced water disinfection process in preventing waterborne infectious diseases, bearing the advantages of low operating cost in a broader range of pH, lower dosages & contact times with chlorine dioxide to turn into an effective disinfectant. However, the dangers of chlorination for micro-organism inactivation with respect to boiling the tap water are as follow:

1) Toxic by-products like trihalomethanes, haloacetic acids & other dissolved organic halogens which are potential human carcinogens (cancer causing stuff) even at low concentration, will be released from boiling the water. 2) Poor inactivation efficiency of spores, cysts & some viruses at low dosages used for bacterial coliform removal which systemically leaked into our tap water, although boiling effectively kills waterborne parasites 3) Varying efficiency affected by the presence of nitrite (nitrification effect) and suspended solid concentrations. 4) Boiling also does not remove many other water contaminants. In fact boiling is liable to concentrate the contaminants, particularly metal contents such as lead, asbestos, mercury, and many toxic organic chemicals which will only increase its harmfulness. 5) Boiling water presents serious health risks, including scalding and burns, that outweigh the benefit which might be achieved in reducing a chlorinous taste.
Why Do You Need A Water Filtration System?

Although your water is treated by your public water authority, because of it's massive size, no one can ensure that your water is free of sediments after passing the series of distribution pipes to reach your home. So it is highly recommended to filter your water from cholorine, rust and dust or even small micro particles that is invisible to our naked eye. Allowing you to enjoy fresh, cool and healthy water instantly.
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RESEARCH INTERESTS My current research interest is in ground water pollution prevention and management especially in areas related to: Ground Water resource evaluation Predicting aquifer vulnerability with validation Analysis of geological/environmental data and mapping using GIS Contaminant mapping, transport, and modeling Application of geophysics (GPR, Electromagnetic, Magnetic, Electrical Resistivity and Shallow Seismic methods) to environmental and hydrologic problems Nonpoint source pollution of water quality issues in surface water and ground water Determination of infiltration processes responsible for groundwater contamination by agricultural chemicals, especially preferential flow through macropores Groundwater and surface water interactions and modeling Land use and the impact on surface and ground water quality 1C. Water pollution (1.5 pages) Sources of water pollution (chemical) Industrial effluent - Effluent from distilleries, paper mills, sugar mills, leather processing industries, mining, textile, dye industries - Thermal pollution (hot water discharge) from factories and power plants - Petrochemicals Agricultural run-offs - Fertilisers, Pesticides Other sources there is another chapter on water and sanitation, which will cover disinfection at point of use. does that have byproducts as well as the more “industrial” purification? This is a personal question as we did not include any by products or side effects in the WHR2002. - Household detergents - phosphates - Treatment of drinking water – Disinfection by-products - Natural contamination of groundwater – arsenic in Bangladesh - Reticulation piping – lead and copper - Consumption of food irrigated with contaminated water (arsenic, cadmium) Industrial / nuclear accidents - The Red Rhine Incident. Consumption of contaminated fish and seafood (mercury) Factors influencing human exposures to chemical water pollution - Some chemicals destroy aquatic life

- Eutrophication of rivers and lakes primarily due to nitrates and phosphates– encourages algal blooms – taste and odour problems as well as being harmful to health - Influences human food chain - Pollution control methods - Drinking and recreational water guidelines Impacts on health Currently, there is no measure of burden of disease due to chemical pollutants in water. The burden of disease from diarrhoeal disease from unsafe water, sanitation and hygiene is very large in developing countries, but the health effects from chemical pollution of water are usually local and less prevalent. An exception is the major public health problem of arsenic in drinking water in Bangladesh and some other countries. are there any reliable estimates? was talking to someone today in SEARO who says there are some, though not totally reliable. Examples of specific health effect situations will be reviewed: carcinogenicity, effects on endocrine and reproductive systems, developmental delays and other nervous system effects (including methylmercury poisoning - Minamata disease), renal system (Including chronic cadmium poisoning – Itai Itai disease) and circulatory system (e.g. methemoglobineamia from nitrate, anaemia and hypertension from lead). No Burden estimates available, except for Lead. Future challenges: Methods to avoid damage to the aquatic system. Better management of water resources. Stringent pollution control. Challenges faced by water authorities in balancing chemical vs microbial risk. Question for the editors: Is water quantity/scarcity an issue to be discussed in this chapter? e.g. changing water table, impact of climate change and prediction of droughts. i certainly thought that climate change was a part of this chapter. If it can be included, i favour it. Section 2: Interventions (to include a review of any literature examining cost effectiveness of the various interventions) (2 pages) (we suggest to include the limited material on cost effectiveness in the next section) 5B. Water Case studies: Industrial water pollution: Mercury poisoning – fishing communities e.g. Minamata disease (discharge of organomercury in to Minamata Bay, Japan, in late 1950s) Cadmium poisoning – rice Other examples of water pollution: Arsenic in Bangladesh where tube wells were introduced as a safe water source

Arsenic contamination from mines in Thailand Thailand – Rapid economic growth, but at a large environmental cost. Draw attention to the fact that in developing countries where subsistence farming is common practice in the villages – people grow and eat own crops – no dilution effect by consuming unpolluted food as well as polluted. Managing Water Pollution from Small- and Medium-scale Industries in Bangladesh Background to the problem The growth of small and medium-scale industrial activities in many developing countries has a positive development dynamic in macro-economic terms but has brought with it a range of problems, including pollution of water resources. This is certainly the case in Bangladesh where the number of small industrial units is conservatively estimated to be about 50,000. Whilst not all are polluting, it is clear that many ecosystems are now under threat, and the livelihood systems of tens of thousands of people are being affected. An evaluation of industrial pollution in South and Southeast Asia found that pollution levels from factories tend to be negatively associated with scale of industrial unit and productive efficiency. There is evidence that an integrated approach, which includes pollution reduction and pollution mitigation though the implementation of low-cost technologies, is required. Community action, or informal regulation, is also a major determinant of the levels of pollution. As a result, an approach was developed to encompass all these elements. Fish, Water and People : Reflections on Inland Openwater Fisheries Resources of Bangladesh/M. Youssouf Ali. Bangladesh, The University Press, xix, 154 p., tables, figs., ISBN 984-05-1397-4. Contents: Preface. Introduction. 1. Water resources. 2. Aquatic living resources. 3. Seasonal migration and movement, and habitat requirements. 4. Water resource development projects. 5. Water pollution. 6. Fish diseases. 7. Fish catch assessment. 8. Major carp spawn fishery. 9. Management of inland openwater capture fisheries. References. "Open water fisheries are major aquatic common property resources in Bangladesh. Fish, Water and People are three of the most important ingredients in the life of Bangladesh. Dr. M. Yuossouf Ali is a leading fisheries biologist with over five decades of experience as a spokesman for fisheries development in Bangladesh. He critically analyses the trends in the development of agriculture, infrastructure and fisheries. It is a reflection on past experiences, present practices and future trends and threats to the valuable openwater ecosystem and its resources. "The book addresses the issues of the aquatic ecosystems of one of world’s largest floodplains, their living resources and habitat. It analyses the water resources projects, water pollution, status and methodologies of catch assessment and looks at the management issues of openwater capture fisheries. "This book presents a picture of the conflicts between the retention of fish habitats and need for croplands and also the need for the protection of biodiversity.

"The book should stimulate the interests of policy makers and scientists interested in ensuring the balanced sustenance of all natural resources of the country." (jacket) Executive Summary Overstepping political boundaries, environmental problems are increasingly putting pressure on the people of the world. Bangladesh is not an exception in this regard. This densely populated low-income country of the South Asian region faces a plethora of environmental hazards, both natural and man-made. Floods, droughts, land degradation, and air pollution are constantly making the people of Bangladesh suffer. One of the major problems for the Bangladesh environment is its water. Pollution and water-borne diseases are common problems for the Bangladeshis. The Farakka Barrage in India plays a crucial role in the water security for Bangladesh. Scarcity of water in the dry season and excess flow of water during the monsoon are among the many critical water problems believed to be emanating from the aforesaid barrage in India. However, the discovery in the 1990s of arsenic in the groundwater of Bangladesh, the main source of drinking water for the country, has added a new dimension to the already existing water security problems in the country. With an estimated 35 to 57 million people drinking arsenic-contaminated groundwater from the hand tubewells installed over the last three decades, the country is now facing not only a major environmental problem, but also a critical health hazard. The World Health Organization (WHO) has identified the arsenic contamination in Bangladesh as the “largest mass poisoning of a population in history.” Until the mid-1990s, the scale of the groundwater arsenic problem in Bangladesh was largely unknown. The first indications of a problem became apparent from a small number of tubewell water analyses from the western part of Bangladesh. By 1997 it was well recognized that in many areas of the country, groundwater, the main source of drinking water, is contaminated with arsenic above the permissible limit. Many of the millions of hand tubewells believed to be supplying pure drinking water are actually leading Bangladesh towards a critical health hazard. The country is now threatened by mass poisoning by arsenic, endangering the lives of millions of people, in both rural and urban areas. The government of Bangladesh, donors, development agencies and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) came forward to try to solve this problem. They initiated a number of projects including screening and labeling of tubewells, building mass awareness about arsenic contamination, developing appropriate and cost-effective arsenic mitigation procedures, and identifying alternative sources of safe drinking water. However, the success so far is negligible. Several organizations proposed ideas on mitigation of arsenic from water, but the country has yet to find a “permanent” solution to the problem. Moreover, the masses, particularly in the rural areas, are largely unaware of the problem. Absence of alternative sources of drinking water has made finding a solution even more complicated. This paper analyzes the nature, causes and consequences of arsenic contamination of groundwater in Bangladesh and the available mitigation options. The paper is divided into several parts. Part One looks at the geophysical and demographic aspects of Bangladesh and then at the drinking water supply scenario in the country. The second part of the paper devotes itself to discussing the background and origin of arsenic contamination in Bangladesh. Part Three analyzes the threat that the high level of arsenic in drinking water poses to the people, examining the consequences for health as well as

on society and considers possible contamination of the food chain. In Part Four, the paper looks at occurrences of arsenic in other countries. Part Five reviews and analyzes ways to face the challenge of arsenic contamination. This part also documents some of the mostrecommended options for the provision of safe drinking water. Part Six puts forward recommendations as to how to deal with the problem of arsenic in Bangladesh, how to find appropriate and cost effective safe water supply options and thus to ensure, at least partially, water security for Bangladesh. Finally, the concluding remarks in Part Seven advocate a definite role for the government of Bangladesh in combating the arsenic menace, but at the same time emphasize the involvement of local communities in any program related to arsenic mitigation. Moreover, it reiterates that in order to ensure drinking water security, the focus should not only be on the mitigation of arsenic, but the provision in general of safe drinking water that is free from any kind of contamination, be it biological or chemical. Procedures for Salvage of Water Damaged Library Materials Since the first publication in 1975 of Procedures for Salvage of Water-Damaged Materials there has been no decrease in the frequency of accidents or unexpected disasters which have resulted in extensive water damage to library materials but there are many signs that we have begun to learn the immense value of disaster preparedness planning. Being familiar with the necessity of having to make a series of interrelated decisions promptly, understanding the effects of any particular course of action on subsequent ones--this is the best kind of preparation needed in the event of major water-damage problems. A wellorganized plan can greatly reduce the costs of salvage and restoration as well as the proportion of outright losses. This preparedness can also go a long way to lessen the emotional and stressful impact upon human beings. The various courses of action discussed in this revised edition are designed to save the maximum amount of material with minimum amounts of restoration on the one hand or replacement on the other. However, it cannot be emphasized too much that no general instructions can take the place of an assessment of a given situation on site by a qualified, experienced library or archive specialist, who has proven experience in the reclamation of fire and water-damaged collections. It is strongly recommended that such assistance and advice be sought at the earliest moment after a disastrous event has occurred. In addition, the Conservation and Preservation Research and Testing Offices of the Library of Congress stand ready to serve as a technical information center and, if need be, a coordinating agency for emergency salvage efforts. Library and archive staffs are now generally better informed about the mechanisms of drying cellulosic materials as well some of the technologies developed for this purpose. The use of vacuum chambers for drying large quantities of books and paper records has become an acceptable, almost common approach, but not without some confusion as to the differences and relative merits of vacuum drying and vacuum freeze-drying. Both methods effectively remove water but by quite different mechanisms and often with quite different results. An understanding of how these technologies function is essential in planning for a recovery operation, in order to make the best possible match between the nature, condition and needs of the materials and the capabilities of a particular drying system. The use of fungicides to control the spread of mold growth has become an increasingly controversial subject because they may cause severe danger to workers and in some cases

to the materials treated. Sterilizing by means of ethylene oxide and related chemicals has come under close scrutiny by the EPA, to the extent that we cannot recommend its use except by a commercial business firm which is fully insured and licensed to perform this service. Treatments involving the use of ethylene oxide (ETO), are best carried out under controlled conditions, as in vacuum chambers at the end of a drying cycle, and they must be guaranteed to leave no residual toxicity in the material. ETO remains the most effective treatment for severe mold attack resulting from major disasters, especially those exposed to river water. The critical decisions that have to be made following water damage require knowledge of available drying technologies and their effects on a variety of composite materials. Ideally, materials removed from site, should be prepared and packed in a manner most suitable for the drying method to be used. Unfortunately, what tends to happen, particularly when no emergency plan exists, is that wet material is packed and shipped off to freezing facilities without knowledge of how the material will be dried. This may result in the material having to be re-packed before drying which adds considerably to the cost of drying and the potential for further damage. The complete restoration of water-soaked documents, particularly bound items, can be a costly process even under the most favorable conditions. In the majority of cases, the high costs involved do not justify the salvage and restoration of books which are in print and can be replaced. However, decisions relating to these factors are virtually impossible to make during a salvage operation and even when a disaster plan exists. On the other hand it might be unwise not to attempt to salvage everything, if an insurance assessment is required and a claim is to be made. Freezing, followed by vacuum freeze drying has been shown to be one of the most effective methods for removing water from large numbers of books and other paper records, but drying is not the final step in the reclamation process. In some cases, volumes which are only damp or which have suffered minor physical damage before freezing may come from a drying chamber in such good condition that they can be returned to the shelves. It is preferable that, where possible, the packing on site should be carried out in such a manner as to segregate very wet material from that which is partially wet and those that are damp from exposure to high humidity conditions This will not only result in cost savings during the drying operation but will help to avoid over drying of the least wet material. In the majority of instances, drying must be followed by restoration and rebinding, and therefore the technique and success of the drying method chosen will directly affect the final cost of restoration. This can be very expensive. Thus, librarians and others faced with decisions which follow serious flooding and water damage from the aftermath of fire, and related water-damaged exposure, need to be reminded that replacement is nearly always much less costly than salvage and restoration. The necessity for making sound, on-the- spot, cost-effective judgments is the best reason for being prepared in advance by developing a pre-disaster preparedness plan. There are a number of such plans that have been drawn up, which can be found in the literature, to serve as models. We encourage all of our colleagues who care about the integrity of library collections, including those who are difficult to persuade that a disaster could ever occur, to formulate disaster preparedness plans without delay so that it may never be necessary to refer to this document in times of distress!

How Water Effects Books and Unbound Materials Paper absorbs water at different rates depending on the age, condition, and composition of the material. Thus, some understanding of the mechanism of swelling action, as well as the development of mold, is essential to planning a successful salvage operation. In addition, when large collections are at stake, it is useful to be able to calculate in advance the approximate amount of water which will have to be extracted in a drying process. This will provide helpful data when selecting an appropriate drying method. Of equal importance is some knowledge of the length of time each type of material can be submerged in water before serious deterioration occurs. Estimating Water Absorption Generally speaking, manuscripts and books dated earlier than 1840 will absorb water to an average of 80 percent of their original weight. Some may absorb as much as 200% of their original weight. Since there is a greater concentration of proteinaceous material and receptivity to water in such early books and papers, they are especially vulnerable to mold when damp. Modern books, other than those with the most brittle paper, will absorb an average of up to 60 percent of their original weight. Thus, in estimating the original weight of a collection, if one assumes an average of four pounds per book when dry for 20,000 books in each category, drying techniques must be capable of removing approximately 64,000 pounds of water from the earlier materials and 48,000 pounds from the latter. The major part of all damage to bound volumes caused by swelling from the effects of water will take place within the first four hours or so after they have been immersed. Since the paper in the text block and the cardboard cores of book bindings have a greater capacity for swelling than the covering materials used for the bindings, the text-block of a soaked book usually expands so much that the spine assumes a concave shape and the fore-edge a convex shape, thus forcing the text block to become partially or completely detached from its binding. The board cores of bindings absorb a great amount of water in such circumstances and are usually the source of mold development between the board papers and fly leaves. This is especially apparent when the area in which water damage has occurred begins to dry out and the relative humidity falls below 70%. Although it is obviously important to remove as much moisture as possible from the environment, it is essential that the water content of the material be monitored because this will remain dangerously high, long after the area is apparently safe. Action taken to salvage the material should therefore be governed by the water content of the material and not by the relative humidity of the area. A water moisture meter, such as an Aqua Boy can be used to measure the water content inside books and box files. If such an instrument is unavailable a crude but quite effective way is to use a mirror within but not touching the text block. Condensation will cloud the mirror. A water content measuring less that 7% is considered dry. Leather and vellum books, especially those of the 15th, 16th, and 17th centuries, can usually be restored successfully if they are dried under very carefully controlled procedures. Such materials are usually classified as rare and should be treated accordingly by not mixing them with less rare materials during preparations for salvage, stabilization and drying. The advice of a certified book conservator may be essential in order to safely carry out the most appropriate methods. If the material is frozen, freezer

paper should be used between each volume to prevent sticking. (Refer to the section on freeze-drying for the special requirements needed for drying this type of material). Unfortunately, modern manufacturing processes so degrade the natural structure of leather that, once water soaked, book covers are often impossible to restore. Some leather bindings will be reduced to a brown sludge, while others will severely shrink. Swelling of covering materials, such as cloth, buckram, and certain plastics is negligible, in some cases shrinkage occurs. Book covers, however, which are made of a highly absorbent cardboard, will absorb water to a greater degree than an equivalent thickness of text block. Some book covering materials which have already deteriorated will absorb water at about the same rate as the text block. Once access to the collection is gained, the external appearance of each volume and group of volumes is a useful indication of the degree of water damage. Those volumes found, usually in heaps, in the aisles will naturally be the most damaged. Not only will they have sustained the shock of falling, as rapid swelling caused them to burst from the shelves, but they will also have been exposed to water for a longer period than the volumes on the shelves above them. These will need special, flat packing and the most extensive restoration. The appearance of such volumes can be a devastating, emotional experience, but one must not panic since every volume worth the cost of salvage and restoration can be saved. Above the floor levels there will be distinct signs among the shelves of the locations of the wettest material. Shelves which have expanded under the pressure of swollen paper and bindings will usually contain a mixture of evenly wet as well as unevenly wet material. The proportion of evenly wet material in these situations is usually less than those that are unevenly wet. This is because books, originally shelved closely packed together, will not easily be completely saturated especially if the paper is slow to absorb. This is the major reason why so many books become misshapen and distorted after water damage and also after they have been frozen and dried. If paper is unevenly wet, it will not dry without distortion. Misshapen volumes with concave spines and convex foreedges can be immediately identified as belonging to the category of very wet. Others that have severely swollen text blocks but that still retain some spine and fore-edge shape may indicate that they were previously bound with library binding oversewing techniques and may have sustained irreversible sewing structure damage. Others may be relatively sound in shape and these stand the best chance of drying with the minimum of distortion. Bangladesh capital faces acute water crisis DHAKA - Bangladesh authorities have been forced to call in the army to distribute drinking water in parts of the capital due to a chronic water shortage in the teeming city of nearly 10 million. Soldiers, carrying water in mobile tanks, have been supplying slums areas housing nearly a quarter of Dhaka's population, city officials said yesterday. In spite of the fact that Dhaka regularly faces devastating floods in the wet season, higher consumption resulting from new housing projects and population growth of over six percent annually was outstripping supplies. Hundreds of men, women and children queue up at roadside water taps every morning jostling to have a quick bath, wash clothes or to grab a pot-full of drinking water.

"The water scarcity was due to growing consumption by the city's hugely expanding multi-storied housing complexes and pollution of the Buriganga," Azharul Haq, Managing Director of the Water and Sewerage Authority (WASA), told Reuters. Hundreds of tonnes of waste and harmful chemicals are dumped in the Buriganga river from tanneries and industries lining its banks. "Those without running water drink from the river or other derelict sources exposing them to health hazards," he added. Haq said the water crisis was likely to deepen during the summer when ground water levels would drop further. Water experts blame the decline in ground water levels on pumping from deep tubewells for irrigation and other purposes. According to Haq, ground water levels had been falling by nearly six feet (two metres) per year. "WASA has a capacity to supply 1.27 billion litres per day against a demand of 1.6 billion litres for residents in the capital". Haq said WASA's efforts to increase water supplies faced difficulties because many of the 750 deep tubewells it used in the capital were unusable because of falling ground water levels. The situation could be helped by the opening of a $131 million surface water treatment plant in the Syedabad area of the city, expected next June. The Syedabad plant will have capacity to supply 225 million litres of clean water each day, Haq said. City officials, however, warned it could prove a drop in the ocean given the huge population pressures facing Dhaka. Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, was established on the banks of the river Buriganga in early 17th century. The total population in Dhaka City grew from 0.1 million in 1906 to 9.9 million in 2000. Dhaka city is projected to be one of the four largest mega cities in the world by next 10 years. In spite of development of communication infrastructure on land, the river Buriganga still remains the main gateway between Dhaka and the southern part of Bangladesh. It has thus promoted establishment of hundreds of mills & factories, shops & business centers, boat terminals, dockyards, residential buildings etc on both banks of the river. Unfortunately, there has been unauthorized occupation on bank-side land, illegal encroachment into the river. The Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) identified in May 2001, 204 illegal structures built on both banks of the river. In July 2001, BIWTA prepared a new list of 309 illegal establishments. However, environmental activists assert that the illegal structures may be as high as 5,000. The river is further polluted by discharge of industrial effluents into river water, indiscriminate throwing of household, clinical, pathological & commercial wastes, and discharge of fuel and human excreta. In fact, the river has become a dumping ground of all kinds of solid, liquid and chemical waste of bank-side population. These activities on the Buriganga have caused narrowing of the river and disruption of its normal flow of water. The water of the river has become so polluted that its aquatic life has almost been extinguished.

A survey in 1999 revealed that the water of Buriganga, Turag, Dhaleshwari, Balu, and Narai flowing around the greater Dhaka city had been completely polluted. The report concluded that the water of these rivers posed a serious threat to public life and was unfit for human use. People, living near the rivers, use the water because they are unaware of the health risks and also having no other alternative. This causes incidents of water borne and skin diseases. On the face of such a deteriorating situation, Buriganga Bachao Andolon (Save Buriganga Movement) started to mobilize mass support to save the river. This subcommittee of BAPA subsequently launched demonstrations against pollution and illegal encroachment in the Gulsan-Baridhara Lake, Ashulia water bodies, other surrounding rivers of the city- Turag, Shitalakha, Balur and against occupying and filling other water bodies in the city. Eventually the movement has spread to other areas in Bangladesh where water bodies are in danger from indiscriminate human activities. Activities: The important citizen showdowns, protest rallies etc that the sub-committee organized are5 July 2000- demonstration at the base of Bangladesh-China Friendship Bridge over the river Buriganga to protest encroachment into the river by Shena Kallyan Sangstha. 5 August 2000- a huge colorful boat rally on the river Buriganga 17 August 2000- sitdown strike for demolition of Shena Kallayan Sangstha structures, constructed illegally on the land of Buriganga and submission of a Memorandum followed by meetings with the minister for Water Resources and State Minister for Shipping 10 March 2001- seminar at Press Club Auditorium on “Nadi Bachan- Amader Bachte Din” (Save rivers and help us live) focusing on deteriorating conditions of the rivers Norai, Debdholai and Balu 11 March 2001- a huge public gathering and demonstration at Trimohoni, Khilgaon against water pollution in the rivers followed by a meeting with the Minister for Environment and Forest Several meetings with WASA officials on water pollution, identification of problems and remedial measures 9 May 2001- participation in the meeting chaired by the Minister of Environment and Forest to discuss on integrated policy on environment that included the state of pollution in the river Buriganga and others 5 February 2002- demonstration at the premises of RAJUK against illegal occupants on the land of Gulsan- Baridhara Lake and that on Ashulia water bodies followed by submission of a Memorandum before the Minister of Housing and Public Works 7 February 2002- Public meeting and demonstration at Barogram demanding control of pollution in the adjacent rivers and water bodies Achievements: The meetings, demonstrations, rallies, seminars etc on illegal encroachment and subsequent degradation of the rivers have influenced other organizations to affiliate with BAPA and Government agencies to take remedial measures. A few of the significant achievements are-

Government demolished Shena Kallayan structures, encroaching into the river Buriganga Government demolished about a hundred unauthorized structures from the banks of Buriganga in May, 2001. In July 2001, another two dozen structures were demolished. Government has agreed, in principle, to undertake a comprehensive project to develop the riverside areas suitable for public recreation. Preparation of a joint survey report with WASA on the hazardous situation of rivers and of adjacent areas of Dhaka city. Success of the Buriganga Bachao Andolon has inspired environmentalists in other areas of Bangladesh to start similar activities to save the river Karnaphuli in Chittagong, Surma in Sylhet and Rupsha in Khulna.

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