Water Pollution in Bangladesh

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Water Pollution in Bangladesh

INTRODUCTION
Water is the most vital element among the natural resources, and is crucial for the survival of all living organisms. The environment, economic growth and development of Bangladesh are all highly influenced by water - its regional and seasonal availability, and the quality of surface and groundwater. Spatial and seasonal availability of surface and groundwater is highly responsive to the monsoon climate and physiography of the country. Availability also depends on upstream withdrawal for consumptive and nonconsumptive uses. In terms of quality, the surface water of the country is unprotected from untreated industrial effluents and municipal wastewater, runoff pollution from chemical fertilizers and pesticides, and oil and lube spillage in the coastal area from the operation of sea and river ports. Bangladesh is the lower riparian of three major river systems, the Ganges-Padma, the Brahmaputra-Jamuna and the Meghna. The aquatic environment for living organisms can be affected and bioaccumulation of harmful substances in the water-dependent food chain can occur. A variation of inland surface water quality is noticed due to seasonal variation of river flow, operation ofindustrial units and use of agrochemicals. Overall, inland surface water quality in the monsoon season is within tolerable limit with respect to the standard set by the Department of Environment (DoE).

Causes of Water Pollution
The major causes of degradation of inland water quality are related to land based activities, when adequate regulatory measures are not incorporated and the stakeholders do not show proper concern. The underlying driving forces for this are poverty, an unhealthy national economy, lack of institutional strength, and lack of awareness and education. Pollutants that enter the marine and coastal environment originate on land in the form of runoff from municipal, industrial and agricultural wastes, and from commercial seafaring activities.

Industrial effluent
In Bangladesh, industrial units are mostly located along the banks of the rivers. There are obvious reasons for this such as provision of transportation for incoming raw materials and outgoing finished products. Unfortunately as a consequence, industrial units drain effluents directly into the rivers without any consideration of the environmental degradation. region, which comprises about 49 per cent of the total sector. Inorganic pollutants are mostly metallic salts, and basic and acidic compounds. These inorganic components undergo different chemical and biochemical interactions in the river system, and deteriorate water quality. The most problematic industries for the water sector are textiles, tanneries, pulp and paper mills, fertilizer, industrial chemical production and refineries. A complex mixture of hazardous chemicals, both organic and inorganic, is discharged into the water bodies from all these industries usually without treatment. The highest numbers of industrial establishments in the country are located in the North Central (NC) WATER POLLUTION AND SCARCITY

Inland Surface Water Pollution
The overall inland surface water quality in the monsoon season is within tolerable limits, with few exceptions, including the rivers Buriganga, Balu, Shitalakhya, Karnaphuli, and Rupsha. However, concerns over surface water quality are gradually emerging due to the dispersed locations of polluting industries, and the adverse effect on surrounding land and aquatic ecosystems, as well as subsequent impacts on the livelihood system of the local community. The extreme examples of this type of effect are near Dhaka at Konabari and Savar, where industrial effluents are discharged into nearby land and water bodies without any treatment. Among the polluted areas, the worst problems are in the River Buriganga situated to the south of Dhaka, where the most significant source of pollution appears to be from tanneries in the Hazaribagh area. In...
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