Saline Water Intrusion: 21st Centuries Challenge

Saline Water Intrusion: 21st Centuries Challenge

Salt water intrusion along the costal belt of the world is a global challenge for this century. About 10% people live along the coast and 41% people live within 100 km (Martínez et al., 2007). Country like Australia also got infrastructures for coastal flooding which is only suitable for last centuries. But for South-East Asian countries, especially flat low lying coastal countries like Bangladesh, this coastal flooding, coastal erosion and sea water intrusion is more devastating for people live along the coast (Ali, 1999 & Habibullah et al. 1999).  Due to lack of fresh water either from surface or from subsurface, people are struggling for drinking water as well as for irrigational purposes. Several case studies show that people migrate to uplands unwillingly due to downfall of economic condition and obstruction of daily activity (Barbieri et al., 2010; Mortreux & Barnett, 2009; Perch-Nielsen, 2008; & McLeman & Smit, 2006).

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The aim of this report is to find out results of salt water intrusions on surface and subsurface of coastal area. And provide a plan how to cope with this slow approaching disaster. This plan includes infrastructural development like rain water harvesting, protecting surface water from coastal flooding and tropical storm surges. Find a way for improving groundwater quality, sustainable agricultural practice in coastal area and to find out any alternative way of living for local people. For this we have to find stakeholders; taking their concerns and suggestions; and manage local authority to make a joint management strategy for implementing this plan.

Providing proper education would be the first step of this joint management plan. Stakeholders should have actual knowledge on what is climate change and its consequences. Local educational institutes, Non-Government Organizations, religious and political leaders can reach people more easily and effectively. Local and social media can be another effective source of providing information about climate change. Infrastructure development is a physical approach to mitigate effect of climate change. Renovation of existing infrastructure can reduce overall project cost. In addition, by incorporating local people can boost micro-economy of those area. Sustainability and durability of those infrastructure is important. Innovative enterprises should adopt on those locality, which are adaptable to climate change. But these enterprise should be closely related to current occupation of local people. Local NGOs can provide training to local women. By this way they can improve their way of living. Economic stability can reduce migration people from coastal area.

Climate change is inevitable but a long term preparation can make a difference. Gradual improving livelihood, adequate fresh water for drinking and irrigation, sustainable agricultural practice and better infrastructure are the key contributor for this difference. Education, infrastructure and economic development will help to overcome this situation.


Ali, A. (1999). Climate change impacts and adaptation assessment in Bangladesh. Climate research12(2-3), 109-116.

Barbieri, A. F., Domingues, E., Queiroz, B. L., Ruiz, R. M., Rigotti, J. I., Carvalho, J. A., & Resende, M. F. (2010). Climate change and population migration in Brazil’s Northeast: scenarios for 2025–2050. Population and environment31(5), 344-370.

Habibullah, M., Ahmed, A. U., & Karim, Z. (1999). Assessment of foodgrain production loss due to climate induced enhanced soil salinity. In Vulnerability and adaptation to climate change for Bangladesh (pp. 55-70). Springer, Dordrecht.

Martínez, M. L., Intralawan, A., Vázquez, G., Pérez-Maqueo, O., Sutton, P., & Landgrave, R. (2007). The coasts of our world: Ecological, economic and social importance. Ecological economics63(2-3), 254-272.

McLeman, R., & Smit, B. (2006). Migration as an adaptation to climate change. Climatic change76(1-2), 31-53.

Mortreux, C., & Barnett, J. (2009). Climate change, migration and adaptation in Funafuti, Tuvalu. Global Environmental Change19(1), 105-112.

Perch-Nielsen, S. L., Bättig, M. B., & Imboden, D. (2008). Exploring the link between climate change and migration. Climatic change91(3-4), 375.

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