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Bangladesh Floods 2004 - Case Study

Causes 

HUMAN - Global warming (flow of water from Himalayas depends on sea level - higher sea level = restricted flow + floods) - extraction of groundwater for irrigation (caused subsidence by 2.5m) reduced deposited silt, meaning land could not build up - urbanisation - population growth meant more pressure on farmers and deforestation to make space for farmable land - led to decreased interception and landslides (decreased slope stability) which filled the channel                                                                                                      

PHYSICAL - most of country is flood plain/delta - 70% of total area < 1m above sea level - 10% is lakes/rivers - snowmelt from Himalayas in spring/summer - heavy monsoon rains - tropical storms mean heavy rain leading to coastal flooding - main cause was above average amount of heavy rain, which lasted for a very long period - all three main rivers reached peak flow at same time 

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Bangladesh Floods 2004 - Case Study

Impacts

41 out of 64 districts affected - two-thirds of country engulfed - nearly 1 in 5 were affected 

The capital, Dhaka, submerged in sewage - half of city underwater

Millions of families displaced - 100's of 1000's of properties destroyed completely

Serious health problems - water borne diseases e.g cholera

Road connections and electrical network affected, meaning it was hard to contact and bring aid

Many wells were filled with dirty water - clean drinking water in short supply

People forced to sell possessions and their crops to survive

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Bangladesh Floods 2004 - Case Study

Management

Government activated its Standing Orders on Disaster 

Central emergency operation centre set up in Dhaka, taking info from all 64 districts

Water purification tablets and medical supplies were provided

Food (rice, grains, vegetables etc) supplied

Items such as clothing and cooking sets supplied

Longer term responses included supplying materials for housing, flood shelters, embankment and road reconstruction, schooling, and bridge/culvert repair

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