An Evaluation of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) activities in Bangladesh

  • Md. Masud Alam Ministry of Water Resources, BANGLADESH
  • Philippe Quevauviller Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Keywords: Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM), Global Climate Change, National Water Policy, Flood Action Plan (FAP)

Abstract

For resolving adverse impact in water sector (such as severe flooding, sedimentation of river channels, erosion of the riverbanks, scarcity of water during the dry season, saline intrusion and environmental degradation in particular in the Southwest, cyclones and tidal surges in coastal areas, heavy arsenic contamination of groundwater etc.) in Bangladesh, lot of studies and programs have been under taken by the Government of Bangladesh during the last fifty years. Current global climate change and upstream withdrawal of water have made the water related problems more critical. Under these circumstances, water resources management needs more comprehensive and integrated approaches. Early day’s water management in Bangladesh were mainly involved to Flood Control Drainage and Irrigation (FCDI) project which caused detrimental effects of other sectors. The issue of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) has been increasingly highlighted after the 1990's. The Flood Action Plan (FAP, 1989-95), Bangladesh Water and Flood Management Strategy (BWFMS, 1995), The Ganges Water Treaty (1996), National Policy for Safe Water Supply and Sanitation (1998), National Water Policy (NWPo, 1999), Guidelines for Participatory Water Management (GPWM, 2000), National Water Management Plan (NWMP, 2004), National Water Resources Database (NWRD, 2001), Regional Technical Assistance (RETA, 2009), Bangladesh Water Act (DBWA, 2013)are the major examples of IWRM practice in Bangladesh.For the evaluation of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) activities in Bangladesh, the three IWRM tools i.e. ‘Enabling Environment’, ‘Institutional Framework’ and ‘Management Instrument’ have been used as a methodology. Lots of Online Questionnaire has been done to the National Water Expertise for getting more information and strengthening the scope of work. Although lot of constraints are existing to develop IWRM plan in Bangladesh, yet the existing policy, plan, guideline, law, institution and information system provide a sound basis for the IWRM implementation in Bangladesh considering the principals of IWRM i.e. efficiency, equity, environmental sustainability. The study has shown that, the progress towards Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) in Bangladesh has been good. Much remains to be done. Nevertheless, advancing IWRM is a process of incremental steps and the Bangladesh water-related sector is clearly moving in the right direction towards the IWRM plan. Finally the study has drawn recommendations for effective implementation of IWRM activities in Bangladesh.

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Author Biographies

Md. Masud Alam, Ministry of Water Resources, BANGLADESH

Senior Scientific Officer, Water Resources Planning Organization, Ministry of Water Resources, BANGLADESH

Philippe Quevauviller, Vrije Universiteit Brussel

Associate Professor, Department of Hydrology and Hydraulic Engineering, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, BELGIUM

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Published
2014-03-24