Many coal-power projects in Bangladesh have been abandoned. Continuing coal-plant pollution in this densely populated delta threatens human life, according to a statement by Bangladesh’s Poribesh Andolon, who calls for an end to coal-power development. Bangladesh has cancelled ten proposed coal-fired power facilities due to environmental concerns. The China-backed Patuakhai and Maheshkhali power plants, each with 1,320 MW capacity; the Malaysia-backed Maheshkhali plant, also with 1,320 MW capacity; a joint Bangladesh-Singapore project; and a joint project between Japan’s Sumitomo Corporation and Bangladesh’s state-owned Coal Power Generation Company Bangladesh are among the plants that have been cancelled.
Lead (Pb) is a heavy metal element found naturally in the environment as well as in manufactured products. The Earth’s crust contains lead that can be released directly into the air as suspended particles. Lead is a chemically resistant and relatively soft metal. Anthropogenic activities such as the burning of fossil fuels, through vehicle exhaust, suspended atmospheric particles, untreated municipal sewage in urban areas, fertilizer and pesticide use in agriculture, a limited planned capacity of municipal solid waste, and mining operations, especially coal in Bangladesh also releases lead in the atmosphere. The atmospheric transmission and deposition on food, soil and other surfaces are the major sources of lead contamination in our daily food.
According to a report titled “Global Burden of Disease” published in the science journal Lancet on May 18, 2022, it clearly mentions that pollution caused over 215 thousand premature deaths in Bangladesh in 2019. The poor air quality was the main contributor to such deaths while water and lead pollution and occupational hazards were the other causes.
The budget proposal was unveiled to parliament two days before World Environment Day and two days after World Ocean Day. In the proposed national budget for the fiscal year 2022-23, the government increased the allocation for environmental protection, but it is insufficient. The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change has been allocated Tk 15 billion in the budget, which was Tk 12.22 billion in FY 21-22. By 2030, the country’s funding and technological resources have been used to set a target of lowering carbon-dioxide emissions by 6.73 percent, with steps taken to make all existing and newly developed sectors environmentally friendly. The government is trying to ensure that by 2041, renewable energy would account for 40% of total energy resources. To develop climate resilience, the ‘Mujib Climate Prosperity Plan’ proposes investing US$80 billion by 2030. According to the projected budget, the investment will be funded internally and externally.
Every year on June 8, World Oceans Day is celebrated worldwide. The 2022 theme for World Ocean Day is Revitalization: Collective Action for the Ocean: “Shedding light on the communities, ideas, and solutions that are working together to protect and revitalize the ocean and everything it sustains.” We need a good solution for our ocean pollution. Due to different types of plastic products our ocean is getting polluted day by day. One of the very useable and low-cost single-use plastic is one of them.
Fifth June is celebrated as the World Environmental Day for emphasizing the importance of nature and its conservation. The day is observed all over the world to raise awareness about the critical importance of protecting Mother Nature. As always, World Environmental Day will be celebrated on 5th June this year. This year “Only One Earth” is the campaign slogan that focuses on “Living Sustainably in Harmony with Nature”. Understanding and accepting the non-sentient reality of natural forces are necessary for living in harmony with nature.