Having lost a home in a cyclone, the child left the coastal village with his family and came to town in the hope of surviving, he had never heard of climate change.
But UNICEF estimates that the adverse effects of climate change are threatening the lives and future of more than 19 million children in Bangladesh.
What future does the changing climate bring for the children?
Experts say young people are being hit hardest by climate change; Even the fetus is not safe in this dark journey.
Multifaceted climate change is hindering the overall development of children in Bangladesh. Children are at risk of health, nutrition, education and safety during the period of physical and mental development.
To cope with the effects of global warming, the government has taken various measures to mitigate and adapt. Experts are urging to take special plans for children as well.
National Assembly Speaker Shirin Sharmin Chowdhury also said in a program on Wednesday that it was important to add children’s ‘thoughts’ on climate change. In this case, Bangladesh can lead on the global platform.
The way danger is coming
In various sectors, including industry and transportation, fossil fuels combine to form energy, releasing various carbon dioxide into the air, most of which is carbon dioxide. These gases retain heat from sunlight. As a result, the earth’s temperature continues to rise.
This increase in temperature is changing the climate, one day the ice is melting, on the other hand the sea level is rising. Extreme weather is causing death and destruction.
World leaders are meeting at the COP-27 conference in Glasgow, Scotland on Sunday to avert the catastrophe of climate change. At the conference, environmentalists are demanding an important decision to save the world from destruction.
Dr. organizer of the environmental movement. Lelin Chowdhury says that if scientists fear that a significant portion of Bangladesh’s population will become climate refugees.
“If the sea level rises, some coastal areas, including a part of the Sundarbans, will be submerged and saline water will invade central Bangladesh. As a result, the balance between our environment and ecology will be disturbed. Diseases caused by environmental disasters and natural disasters – this will lead to the deterioration of public health. “
The joint general secretary of the Save the Environment Movement said increasing salinity would have an impact on grain production. People will then move on to alternative foods. There will be a risk of malnutrition.
Shahriar Hossain, general secretary of the Environment and Development Organization (ASDO), told bdnews24.com that the temperature was still high in winter due to climate change. Food security risks are being created.
“It simply came to our notice then. Floods occur naturally every three years; But we have been seeing floods every year for the last four-five years. The timing of the floods is also changing.
“The northern region was flooded last month. That being said, the water came in as the dam gate opened upstream. But the thing is that this water came from the Himalayas. This means that the ice melts more as the temperature rises. Then the water came in untimely. ”
Shahriar Hossain said that according to floods, cyclones and droughts, disasters have a major impact on people’s livelihoods. Due to the large population, Bangladesh is more concerned than the developed countries.
“When Vitamati left, he moved from one place to another. Every year people from the south move to other cities. It’s migration, too, but we’re not counting it. “
Where children are in danger?
Shahriar, general secretary of SDO, believes that children are most at risk from the way climate change is exposing social problems.
“Once displaced, a child is forced to go to work for a living. Everyone in the family tries to make a living together. A girl is considered a burden in the family then, she is given in marriage. ”
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said in a report in April 2019 that floods, cyclones, erosion, drought and other environmental disasters threaten the lives and future of more than 19 million children in Bangladesh.
UNICEF also fears that the achievements of countries around the world in the development of children over the past few decades may be tarnished by climate change.
Public health expert said. Mushtaq Hossain says that as a result of climate change, people will face health risks and malnutrition both directly and indirectly.
“There is no doubt that children will suffer the most. Needless to say, babies and pregnant mothers. ”
Explaining the matter, he told bdnews24.com: If you do not have pure water, you will suffer from stomach ache. Foodborne illness will come.
“If the temperature rises, mosquito-borne dengue, chikungunya and malaria will increase. If it rains during the cold season or when it rains during the cold season, the diseases that are spread through sneezing and coughing will spread. The disease will spread through excrement and touch. ”
Lelin Chowdhury, director of Health and Hope Specialized Hospital, said, “Childhood is the age at which people develop. Of course, children will not be spared the multifaceted changes that are taking place as a result of climate change. ”
Maleka Banu, general secretary of the Women’s Council for Women and Children’s Rights, said women and children were the “most vulnerable” in society and would be more affected by climate change.
“Many of the children we see working, in child labor, have been displaced by natural disasters or climate change,” he said. This is a serious violation of human rights. “
That is why Maleka Banu urges to consider the issue of children separately in planning to address the risks of climate change.
Nothing to do?
Mushtaq Hossain, an advisor to the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research, IEDCR, believes that children cannot be protected from environmental disasters by taking initiatives at the individual level.
“Security needs to be provided at the social and national levels. It cannot be done alone. “
And Esdor Shahriar Hossain says, no country can control this natural process alone. That is why he advised Bangladesh to carry out coordinated activities with the neighboring countries.
“We will be able to mitigate the effects of climate change if regional bodies like SAARC take action.”
“Air, soil and water pollution need to be controlled,” he said. If the use of toxic chemicals is kept at a tolerable level, it will not harm the environment. We have to work to control them. ”
Shahriar suggests finding ways to adapt to climate change.
“We have to master how to survive in this. We have to look at what kind of crop will grow in this climate. You have to go to the crops that grow in the water. Then food security will be ensured. ”