Bangladesh: Towards Resilience - HFA and Beyond

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DRR in 2015

During 1990-2008 the Bangladesh incurred an average annual loss equal to 1.8% of the GDP due to natural disasters. Nevertheless, the country has made considerable and significant development gains over the last 10 years.

Economic growth has been averaging 6% for the last decade, poverty has decreased from 40% in 2005 to 24.7% in 2014 and Bangladesh has already achieved five out of eight of the MDGs. This has all been achieved against the backdrop of being exposed to natural and human-induced hazards. It is estimated that 14% of Bangladesh’s GDP is exposed to disasters on an annual basis. This is a testament to the innate resilience of the Bangladeshi people, who continue to make developmental progress while living with disasters and climate risk.

At the end of the Hyogo Framework period Bangladesh has emerged as a successful nation in Disaster Risk Reduction 2005 2006 Bangladesh Climate Change Strategy and Action Plan (BCCSAP) adopted BCCSAP revised Standing Orders on Disasters (1997) revised National Plan for Disaster Management (2010-2015) adopted DRR integrated in 6th Five Year Plan (2011-2015)
Disaster Management Act 2012 enacted Hyogo Framework for Action adopted Community Risk Assessment guideline adopted 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 (DRR) and has become a role model in the management of natural and human induced disasters. The HFA (2005-2015) provided an enabling environment for Bangladesh DRR actors to promote and motivate those outside of the sector to see Risk Reduction as a shared responsibility and to justify the paradigm shift from conventional response and relief practice to a more comprehensive risk reduction approach.

In the last 10 years Bangladesh has experienced low mortality resulting from its regular floods and cyclones.

However, these disasters continue to bring a significant economic loss. Additionally, neglected and emerging risks are now being prioritized. Highly dense population (1,203 people/sq km), rapid and unplanned urbanisation (at a rate of 2.9% per year) combined with a significant earthquake risk pose a severe threat to lives, livelihoods and property in Bangladesh’s cities. Slow onset and persistent disasters like salinity, waterlogging and drought merit increased attention. Drivers to economic growth are currently also contribute to increased risk; the IPCC’s 5th Assessment Report projects that if temperature rises more than 2 degrees Celsius Bangladesh could lose more than 17% of its coastal land mass which makes clear the need for integrated efforts on climate adaptation and risk reduction programming to enhanced resilience in Bangladesh.