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Bangladesh: Communities claim water rights to build resilience December 09,2019   |  Source: Climage Home News

Communities living along the remote southwestern coastline of Bangladesh face a myriad of climate change-induced problems: erratic rainfall, extreme river flooding, sea level rise, cold spells, high tides, cyclones, and rising temperatures, just to name a few. In places like Kultali, canals are important because they store freshwater, a precious resource in this salinisation prone coastal area. Traditionally, freshwater canals in Bangladesh have been public resources, with open access to everyone in the neighbouring communities. But in recent years, weak local governance has enabled local strongmen to illegally take control of the canals for private fish farming, or to fill them in, creating land where there once was flowing water. This leaves farmers and fishers with less and less fresh water for their livelihoods, creating further marginalisation among already-vulnerable people.

This domino effect of problems has caught the attention of three organisations partnering to help get the canals back in the hands of the people: a research institute, the International Centre for Climate Change and Development (ICCCAD); a national sustainable development NGO, Center for Natural Resource Studies (CNRS); and a public interest law group, the Center for Climate Justice – Bangladesh

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Years in Support of Small Scale Fishworkers (1986 - 2018)