Increasing coastal risk/coastal erosion

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  • Increasing risks/coastal erosion
    • 2.8m at risk from cyclone and monsoon flooding risk.
    • Case Study: The Sundarbarbs, India and Bangladesh
      • The Sundarbarbds forest - one of the largest mangrove forests in the world - lies on the delta of the Ganges.
        • Sea level has risen by by an average rate of 3.1cm a year in the past 20 years. A further rise of 1m would inundate 1000km2.
          • Four islands - Bedford, Lohachara, Kabasgadi and Suparibhanga lost to sea - 6000 homeless.
            • The authorities also need to address a range of other issues: The growth of the prawn monoculture, erosion caused by the barraging of rivers and the diversion or blocking of upstream water, the use of mangrove wood to feed a gas plant and the silting up of West Bengal's largest port, Haldia.
              • Exceptional fauna - 260 bird species - the Bengal tiger.
                • The region is ecologically significant because of the combination of processes happening there; monsoon rains, flooding, delta formation, tidal influence and plant colonisation
    • Mangroves
      • Trees and shrubs that grow in a saline coastal habitats in the tropics and subtropics.
        • Vital nursaries for fish and crustaceans.
          • Their roots, which are exposed at low tide, trap silt and help to create new land. Mangrove timber provides fuel and building material, but perhaps the greatest value of mangroves in the age of rising sea levels is the protection from storm surges they give to low-lying coastal areas.
            • 2004 Asian Tsunami - two died in settlement dense with mangrove, 6000 died in settlement with without mangroves.
              • They are cleared at a great rate to provide timber and sites for tourists resorts and shrimp agriculture.
  • The city is only 10-15m above sea level.
    • 2.8m at risk from cyclone and monsoon flooding risk.
    • The entire Indian coastline has been legally protected since 1991.
      • This stated that the coast should be kept free of all unnecessary development and protected from environmental degradation.
        • The policy has been controversial; While every regional government supported the legislation  in reality, the indiscriminate approval of industrial, residential buildings, and commercial complexes continues as before. Wetlands are reclaimed and mangroves destroyed.


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