Bangladesh has failed to recognize just how important the Sundarbans are

Cyclone Yaas has come and gone and once again, it is the Sundarbans which has protected Bangladesh from the worst of its effects — something that it has done time and again with each and every tropical storm that hits Bangladesh.

Yet, the forest ecosystem itself is not spared the worst of these storms; both its flora and fauna suffer significant damage, and the forest is inundated in saline water, threatening the ecosystem further.  

What is more concerning, however, is that the advent of climate change makes it more likely that we will see storms like Yaas on a more regular basis, and experts have rightfully expressed concern over the Sundarbans being able to stand up to such storms repeatedly.

Furthermore, over the years, Bangladesh has failed to recognize just how important the Sundarbans are, not only as a first line of defense against storm surges and cyclones, but also as a crucial part of Bangladeshi heritage and our identity as a nation.

Unfortunately, over 150 industrial projects are currently at work around the Sundarbans, threatening its very existence and future. Thus, it is imperative that Bangladesh, in its quest for development, does not forget about the Sundarbans and the priceless contribution it makes to the country. There is no Bangladesh without the Sundarbans and we must protect it at all costs.

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