Mainstreaming Climate Change Adaptation into Policies in the Sundarbans Region

  • M. Monirul Qader MirzaEmail author
  • Mir Ahsan A. Talpur
  • Ainun Nishat
Part of the Coastal Research Library book series (COASTALRL, volume 30)


The Sundarbans, the single largest mangroves forest in the World is shared by Bangladesh and India. It is situated in the delta of the Ganges, Brahmaputra and the Meghna rivers. The Sundarbans ecosystem interacts with the coastal processes of the Bay of Bengal and the Ganges River and its distributaries. The mangrove forest is sensitive to sea surface and surface temperatures, precipitation, fresh water flows, saline water intrusion and sedimentation. The value of the ecosystem services of the Sundarbans is enormous. Salinity intrusion due to reduced flow of the Ganges since the commissioning of the Farakka Barrage in 1975 has been affecting the Bangladesh part of the Sundarbans. The Sundarbans is also vulnerable to frequent occurrences of cyclones and associated storm surges. Livelihoods of the people living in and around Sundarbans are also affected by the changes that are taking place there. Future climate change and sea level rise together with human interventions on the upstream water flows may affect the Sundarbans ecosystem significantly. The possible impacts can be reduced by mainstreaming adaptation in the national policies and programmes of the departments/institutions involved with the management of the Sundarbans. However, many challenges are associated with the mainstream process which need to be addressed. India and Bangladesh can work together for the sustenance of the Sundarbans ecosystem and to safeguard livelihoods of millions of people.


Sundarbans Mangroves Climate change Sea level rise Salinity Adaptation Mainstreaming Policy 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Monirul Qader Mirza
    • 1
    Email author
  • Mir Ahsan A. Talpur
    • 1
  • Ainun Nishat
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Physical and Environmental SciencesUniversity of Toronto at ScarboroughTorontoCanada
  2. 2.Centre for Climate Change and Environmental Research (C3ER)BRAC UniversityDhakaBangladesh

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