Natural Disasters in Bangladesh

Bangladesh is sometimes considered a land of natural disasters because it is very vulnerable when it comes to floods, river erosion and cyclones. Already being a poor country that survives mostly on foreign and international aid, Bangladesh is also vulnerable in face of earth’s forces. That is why the country is in a permanent state of danger. The natural elements have caused the death of millions of people and are threatening the 140 million population that is currently living in Bangladesh.

The recent natural disaster that took place in Bangladesh was on November 15, 2007. It was a cyclonic storm named Sidr that brought havoc in southern and central Bangladesh. Millions were left homeless after the storm had passed. Sidr was the deadliest cyclone to ever hit Bangladesh since its independence. It killed almost 4000 people and injured about 30.000. Unofficial sources say that the numbers are even higher.

Today, due to advanced technology, people can find out when a cyclone is coming. In the case of Sidr, some 3 million people were evacuated to higher grounds before the waves hit the coast land. Still, the damages that the cyclone produced heavily affected the already poor and fragile economy of Bangladesh. Trees were uprooted, crops were destroyed, entire roads and bridges were totally washed away, telephone poles were smashed to the ground, electricity was cut off and livestock was killed.

Bangladesh is also prone to frequent floods. The last one, that took place in 2007, destroyed approximately 60.000 houses. This means that almost 60.000 families were left without a shelter in a country where poverty rates are high and shelter is sometimes considered a luxury, not a basic human need. Specialists blame deforestation and climate change as the main actors guilty for frequent flooding. Climate change causes the sea water levels to rise, meaning that the coast of Bangladesh will narrow each year and will get flooded more often.