Uploaded by Nourin Rahman

Term paper 1 ECO354 Spring 2021 Nourin Rahman. ID-1831748620

Nourin Rahman.
How can a cleaner Buriganga river contribute to the local economy?
The Buriganga River in Bangladesh is a river that flows past the southwest outskirts of the capital
city, Dhaka. It is known and ranked among the most polluted rivers in the country. The river is so
polluted that it is actually almost certainly biologically and hydrologically dead. Long ago, it was
actually a tributary of the Ganges and it flowed into the Bay of Bengal through the river Dhaleshwari.
Back then, the river supplied drinking water and supported trade and commerce operations and the
city paid back the bounty of the river by sucking life out of it, the main cause of it being pollution,
such as the rampant dumping of industrial and human waste.
Cleaning of the Buriganga has ever since felt like a necessity. When we call for the saving of the
Buriganga, underneath it is the compulsion to save the capital because without saving the Buriganga
river, it is almost impossible to save Dhaka city.
Rivers are not only primary water sources to drive the economic engines of irrigation and
hydropower, but they also provide a much broader set of services that have immense benefits to
people and economies.
Lack of access to safe water, basic sanitation and good hygiene is a significant reason why so many
people in Bangladesh suffer due to poor health. Diarrhea and dengue are some of the most common
illnesses. A study by the Water and Sanitation Program (WSP) wing of the World Bank reveals that
Bangladesh incurred a loss of Tk295.48 billion in 2010 due to inadequate sanitation, which is 6.3%
of the GDP. Therefore cleaning up the Buriganga and preventing further destruction would greatly
help in this aspect.
Improvement of health through investments in Buriganga’s water management and sanitation would
also provide some long-term economic growth benefits. There are substantial economic benefits of
education and cleaner water would mean that children would get ill less often and spend less time
fetching water and so could spend more time in school. In Bangladesh, where the level of these
diseases are chronic, entire sectors of economy such as agriculture,manufacturing and tourism,
suffer and high rates of illnesses introduce a new source of business risk that deters investment.
Agriculture and food production is by far the largest user of water particularly for developing
countries like Bangladesh. Obviously, the Buriganga in its current state cannot be used for these
causes, but if cleaned up it can greatly benefit the economy. Of course,the improved water
management would provide benefits to farmers’ livelihood at one end and the competitiveness of
agri-business in a globalising world at another end. Catching fish in Bangladesh provides livelihood
for much of the locals and the productivity and value of these fisheries are highly dependent upon
the quantity as well as quality of the water supply. Since the Buriganga is so polluted, no living
creatures are able to breathe in the water. If it were to be cleaned, then it could provide many jobs to
people as fishermen as well as having the fish as a constant food supply.
Industrial facilities need to use water for a handful of purposes such as cooling and transportation
means, producing steam or electricity, sanitation and as a critical component of a firm’s output.
Water supply shortages have actually caused many businesses to dig their own wells. If the
Buriganga were to be restored from its dead state, they could benefit by using it.
The development of hydropower capacity is a strategy that would reduce the economic dependence
on fossil fuels and limit greenhouse gas emissions. In a developing country like Bangladesh, these
kinds of resources are absolutely necessary as there are a lot of benefits of electrical power in terms
of economic growth and the alleviation of poverty. The energy services could help in daily life
activities such as heating, cooking and illumination but also they are critical inputs to agriculture and
the different types of small-scale productive activities which are a vital component of rural and urban
economies. This cannot be done when the Buriganga river is a dying river.It has to be cleaned first.
Well-planned water storage infractures are also necessary for the provision of safe and secure water
supply to households,agriculture and food production, and for industry. So, once the Buriganga river
is cleaned up it may be able to help provide these services.
Water and also how the water is being managed contributes a great ton to the production and
consumption of ecosystem goods and services such as fish, fuel,timber, food crops, medicine and
pasture. However here in Bangladesh, the ecosystems are not maintained at the level that ensures
productivity. The improvement of water resources management has several productive benefits.
These benefits are not possible to be reaped until Buriganga has been cleaned because none of this
can be possible in a river which has water that resembles thick black gel.
Just as like in most South-Asian countries, Bangladeshis also live and work beside the river. Many
attempts have been made to try to clean up the river, but as an example of how the people are, a
man has been reported to say that at one side the river was being cleaned, and the other side
people were rinsing their clothes full of dye in the river. The main aim of the cleanup attempts were
to try to make the water fit for drinking again and also to ensure that the river could be used by
tourists and vendors.
The Buriganga river was so polluted that its oxygen level was measured to be zero until 2019. The
pollution in the river is not only affecting the men,women and children living near there, but also the
plants, animals and shops/industries too. Also, to save Dhaka from the impact of climate change,
many environmental activists have taken up responsibility for cleaning the river. Hopefully someday
in the future, due to the countless efforts of people trying to save the river, we may be able to
witness a time when the Buriganga is full of life once more and the economy of Bangladesh will be
like the reflection of the river’s greatness.