Bangladesh

Main Features: 

Population: 168 million (2017)

Area: 143, 998 km²

Capital city: Dhaka

Main cities: Dhaka (18 million), Chittagong (4.1 million), and Khulna (1.6 million)

Apex: Mowdok Mual (1052 m)

Languages: Bengali, English

Religions: Muslims (90%) Hinduism (9 %) Buddhism (0,6%), Christians (0,3%), Animists (0,1%)

Political situation: 

Parliamentary representative democratic republic

Head of state: Prime minister Sheikh Hasina (since 2009)

Unesco World Heritage Sites: Historic Mosque City of Bagerhat (1985), Ruins of the Buddhist Vihara at Paharpur (1985), The Sundarbans (1997)

Miscellaneous Features:

Historical tension with India.

Many Rohingas refugees come from Burma in the eastern part of Bangladesh.

Environment: 

Located between India and Birma, Bangladesh is on the Ganga delta, the biggest delta in the world which makes it naturally prone to floods. Its situation in the Bay of Bengal makes it also prone to frequent cyclones and tropical storms.

Due to climate change, the Himalayas are melting faster and faster which cause even more frequent floods and alluvium in the plain. The Indian Ocean tends to be warmer which could have an impact on cyclone intensity. Furthermore, sea level rise induced by melting ice might cause catastrophic consequences for Bangladesh.  80% of the country is below 10-meters in altitude. In 2050, 20% of the territory will be under water forcing more than 15 millions people to move. The Sundarbans, the biggest mangrove forest in the world,  is in danger because of natural hazards and sea level rise but also because of human exploitation of coal in the area. Mangroves constitute a natural barrier against erosion in the coastal areas and the premature loss of the forest could amplify the existing issues. In coastal areas, salinization caused by sea floods, destroys most of the crops, acutely problematic in a country where 80% of the population live from agriculture.

Many people from rural areas decide to leave their lands to go to Dhaka or in the nearest cities to improve their livelihoods and find job opportunities. However, cities are crowded and most migrants find themselves in slum areas, sometimes in even more vulnerable situations. 

 

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