Adaptation actions and human security in Bangladesh: an analysis of disaster resilient response mechanisms in the context of coastal hazards

Edris Alam, Salim Momtaz, Andrew Collins

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterpeer-review

Abstract

Coastal hazards are considered as the greatest threats to human life and security in many countries in the world. It is known that frequent natural hazards coupled with climate change are triggering complex development challenges in many developing countries. In Bangladesh rapid population growth and a slow economic growth rate have forced a substantial part of the ever-increasing vulnerable population to settle in natural hazard prone unsecured locations. For example, offshore islands such as Sandwip, Kutubdia and Hatiya in the Bay of Bengal are subjected to frequent tropical cyclones (e.g., cyclone 1991, cyclone 1997, Sidr 2007 and Aliya 2009). Local communities in these remote islands are also severely affected by coastal erosion. To live in the changing environment, the coastal people are continuously applying adaptation strategies. Adaptation means adjustment of survival strategies in response to coastal hazards, to reduce vulnerability or enhance resilience. In this context, the present research is an attempt to identify what sort of adaptation strategies the hazard affected coastal communities are adopting and will continue to adopt for their future life and livelihood. To understand community led adaptation strategies through the eyes of the affected people, qualitative data (i.e. participant observation, focus group discussions, semi structured interviews and archival research) have been collected from the rural communities who are surviving in the hazardous coastal and island areas of Bangladesh. The findings suggest that hazards affected people actively interact with changing disaster situations through their self instinct coping mechanisms and survival strategies. It is also explored how with no social security schemes and appropriate mitigation measures, frequent disasters have posed a constant threat to the basis of livelihoods and settlement leading to deterioration of the general standard of living, quality of their environment and consequently to increases in human insecurity for coastal Bangladesh.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2012
EventAustralian Meteorological & Oceanographic Society Annual Conference (AMOS 2012) - Sydney, Australia
Duration: 1 Jan 2012 → …

Conference

ConferenceAustralian Meteorological & Oceanographic Society Annual Conference (AMOS 2012)
Period1/01/12 → …

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