The people of the coastal regions of Bangladesh face many climate-induced hazards that have an enormous impact, claiming lives, destroying assets, and constraining life and livelihoods.
The Char Development and Settlement Project phase IV(CDSP-IV) is being implemented under a partnership of the Government of Netherlands, IFAD and the Government of Bangladesh. The overall objective of CDSP-IV is to reduce poverty and hunger for poor people living in the newly accreted coastal chars. This would be achieved via the development of improved and more secure rural livelihoods in agriculture, provision of legal title to land, and through provision of climate resilient infrastructure.
The Forest Department (FD) is one of the six government agencies implementing CDSP-IV and has responsibility for forestry activities. The specific objectives of the forestry component are:
- Establishment of shelterbelts to protect the chars from storms and cyclones.
- Generation of benefits for members of Social Forestry Groups (SFGs) – both from employment by FD in plantation activities and from a share of the income generated by plantation trees
- Production of fuel wood to alleviate the severe fuel shortages that now exists in these chars
- Generation of income from homestead forestry and tree nurseries
To achieve these objectives, the following plantations have been established: (i) foreshore mangrove plantation - 7400 ha; (ii) non-mangrove foreshore plantation - 200 ha; (iii) block plantation 100 ha; (iv) plantation along drainage channels - 80 km; (v) roadside plantation –268 km; (vi) embankment plantation - 35 km; (vii) plantations around 95 institutions and 16 killas (livestock refuges).
Results of these plantations include:
- Newly accreted land has been stabilized.
- A huge quantity of timber, fuel wood, fruit etc. has been produced.
- New wildlife habitats have developed and biodiversity protected.
- The increase in tree cover has improved the environment for char dwellers and for a range of livelihood activities.
- The prevailing threats and impacts of climate change in the coastal region have been reduced.
- Local communities have been sensitized and made aware of the value of tress and their relevance for climate resilience.
- Wage employment has been provided for plantation labourers and watchers.
In recognition of the very successful plantations in the coastal belts of Noakhali district by the Forest Department through CDSP-IV, a national award for the best tree plantation of the year in 2017 has been awarded to the Noakhali Coastal Forest Division. Mr. Md. Saiful Islam Dewan, Beat Officer, Charbata Range Office of Noakhali Coastal Forest Division, received the award from the Honorable Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at the National Tree Fair, 2017.
Honorable Prime Minister presenting the award to Mr Dewan