Community-based adaptation in vulnerable coastal areas of Bangladesh

Duration: March 2011-April 2013
Supported by: Asian Development Bank, Bangladesh Resident Mission (BRM)

The project aims to mainstream climate change adaptation (CCA) and disaster risk reduction (DRR) in community level planning and programming.  The main impact of this initiative will be to improve the resilience of vulnerable community against natural disasters, climate change, climatic variability and extreme weather events.  The targeted vulnerable group includes climate-induced disaster-affected poor families (with special emphasis on women-headed families) living in the exposed and vulnerable hotspots of coastal zones who have very little capacity to cope with extreme weather events and the communities whose livelihoods are solely dependent on harvesting natural resources.  The project will primarily concentrate in four villages of two coastal upazilas of Bangladesh.

Outcomes and Outputs

Outcome 1:

Improved community understanding and capacity on climate change and variability and improved preparedness meausre for DRR and CCA


  • Climate vulnerability map of the community
  • Climate and disaster risk assessment report
  • Socio-economic and livelihood assessment report of the project areas

Outcome 2:

Enhanced adaptive and risk reduction capacity of the vulnerable community with viable adaptation options


  • 10 demonstration plot of adaptive agriculture
  • 10 demonstration plot of adaptive aquaculture
  • Demonstration of low-cost service for safe drinking water in 20 households
  • 10 climate-resilient community shelter/homes
  • Pilot demonstration of 20 solar home systems and 10 biogas plants in 10 households
  • Demonstration of clean technology (plantation, Improved Kitchen etc.) in 20 households
  • Off farm promotion in 10 Household

Outcome 3:

A more effective and enhanced capacity of the community on pre and post disaster management


  • Organised training for 1,000 fishers and coastal community people for understanding and dissemination of cyclone signal warning
  • Farmers/fisher manual (500 copies) on adaptive agriculture and aquaculture
  • Conducted awareness and skill training on CCA and DRR for 500 vulnerable people
  • Publication of BRM's climate change and environment related manuals, reports, guidelines, booklets, brochure, policy brief, etc


These will be carried out in three phases.

  • Impacts and vulnerability assessment for preparation
  • Piloting adaptation and provisioning service for climate resilience
  • Improved communication for risk reduction


This project is part of Practical Action Bangladesh's Reducing Vulnerability programme.

Read more about the impact of climate change, and Practical Action's work to help communities adapt

Towards a beautiful future:

This documentary captures the experiences of the project `Community Based Adaptation in Vulnerable Coastal Areas of Bangladesh' furnished with innovations and acts as a vehicle to take the learning forward to other coastal areas of Bangladesh and beyond.

Weather Forecasting Board

An innovative system has been piloted in Satkhira where the weekly weather forecast generated by the Agromet Division of the Bangladesh Meteorological Department (BMD) is collected, interpreted and made useful for the farmers at the union level. This system considers the Union Information and Service Centre (UISC) (located within each union council of Bangladesh) as the heart of weather information dissemination. The UISC downloads the weekly weather forecast from the BMD website. In the light of the forecast, it seeks advice from the local government agricultural, livestock and fisheries officers to prescribe agricultural actions for the local farmers.

Community Based Adoption

Community-Based Adaptation: Innovation to Build Resilience: Coastal communities of Bangladesh have been dealing with vulnerabilities with many faces. Salt water intrusion affects their surface and ground waters, leading to severe scarcity of water to drink and to irrigate crop fields. Salinity has further transformed their agricultural practices from rice-based to shrimp-farming-based. Natural hazards, like cyclones and storm surges, are another major element in the vulnerabi.lity equation. Reduced tree coverage and damaged em ba n kments/polders have further reduced resilience of these people. The destructive impacts of climate change, climate variability and disasters can be seen on the food and nutritional security, the income and employment situation, and the water, sanitation and health condition of coastal areas, like Satkhira. These affect the poor and extreme poor the most, who have inadequate knowledge and technologies to adapt to changing climate and to reduce their risks to disasters.

Rice-based Cropping System

An innovative rice-based agricultural system has been piloted in saline-prone Satkhira district. This system has utilized some existing opportunities to address some serious limitations prevailing in this cyclone-affected, shrimp-farm dominated south-western part of the country where rice farming coverage has decreased significantly over the last few years.

Community Shelter Home

Traditionally, the people of the coastal area build their houses with mud, leaves and wood. Recent saline water intrusion pushed the soil to lose its binding properties. Frequency of high-wind incidences has also increased in the recent years destroying conventional mud-leaf houses. Adequate number of cyclone shelter is one option to save lives and assets. But, in addition to the huge cost needed to build these shelters, regular maintenance is another major concern. An innovative approach has been piloted in Satkhira where strong regular houses are built to serve as small shelters during high-wind incidences. Such a house is called a Community Shelter Home.

Artificial Aquifer Tube-well

Artificial AquiferTube-well' is an innovation to treat contaminated surface water for domestic use on the saline-prone coast and arsenic & iron contaminated parts of Bangladesh. The recharging structure resembles the natural underground aquifer, which is the source of groundwater

no comments