Old Dhaka dwellers facing acute water crisis

Severe water crisis in some parts of Old Dhaka is causing acute suffering to the residents.
The residents of different areas, including Gendaria, Sutrapur, Gualghat, Narinda, Lakshmibazar, Rhrishikesh Das Road, Kaltabazar, Islampur, Loharpul, Faridabad, Mugda and Jatrabari are passing days in acute scarcity of water.
They have alleged that the Dhaka Water Supply and Sewerage Authority failed to supply enough water to the areas to meet their daily necessities.
Dhaka South City’s ward-41 councilor Sarwar Hossain Alo has told New Age that the water supply authorities took no step though he had submitted several complaints to them in the last one month.
Jannatul Ferdaus, a student of Jagannath University and a former resident of Rhrishikesh Das Lane, has said that she left the area because of the acute water crisis.
I could not take shower and do my household works day after day as there was not even a single drop of water in the line,’ she said.
WASA officials have said that they are now capable of producing 2,450 million litres of water every day against the demand for 2,400 million litres per day.
The WASA runs 712 deep tube-wells and five water treatment plants in the city to supply water in the capital.
Dhaka WASA director (technical) AKM Shahid Uddin has said that resident of some areas are facing water crisis as the WASA is replacing some deep tube-wells.
Though the production is more than the demand, the dwellers of some areas are facing water crisis due to some technical problems,’ he added.

BD earns global recognition for ensuring safe drinking water: Envoy

Dhaka, Mar 15 (UNB) – Representatives of the members of the High-Level Panel on Water (HLPW) have handed over the HLPW outcome to the UN Secretary General (SG) António Guterres and Senior Representative of the World Bank President at SG’s office in the UN Headquarters.
Permanent Representative (PR) of Bangladesh to the United Nations, Ambassador Masud Bin Momen joined the event on behalf of Prime Minister and Panel member Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday, said a press release on Thursday.
After handing over the outcome documents, Ambassador Masud said the outcome package that they have handed over on behalf of “our leaders will provide the governments and all stakeholders guidance to carry out meaningful water actions to implement the SDGs and to create a water-secure world for all.” Mentioning that water and environment remains at the center of the development priorities of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina the PR said under Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s visionary leadership, Bangladesh has earned global recognition as a champion for ensuring safe drinking water and sanitation for all.
"In a country of more than 160 million people, nearly everyone can access safe drinking water.
Now, our target is to ensure direct access to safe drinking water for all by 2020," he said.
Ambassador Masud also mentioned that Bangladesh values water as a right, and as a tool to ensure human dignity.
He expressed his sincere appreciation to the High Level Panel on Water leaders for their commitment, guidance, and hard work.
Mentioning that climate change and frequent disasters have exacerbated the crisis of safe water across the world, the Secretary General assured that the proposals for accelerated water actions of HLPW leaders would be taken very seriously by the UN system.
SG also hoped that the governments of member states would also take guidance from these recommendations while implementing water actions at the national level.

Dhaka Water Summit begins tomorrow

A two-day Dhaka Water Summit 2017 will begin tomorrow (Saturday) in the capital to discuss ways and means for attaining the UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG)-6.
The theme of the summit is ‘Water Sustains Development’ where water experts and scientists will exchange knowledge and share their experiences to deal with water-related problems in South Asia, South East Asia and Delta Coalition region.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will inaugurate the summit at Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel.
There will be four technical sessions during the summit.
The sessions will focus integrated water resources management, protection and restoration of water-related ecosystem, universal and equitable access to drinking water for all, valuing water, adequate and equitable sanitation for all, promoting hygienic practices, improvement of water quality by pollution prevention and combatting water scarcity by improved water efficiency.
The experts in the summit will put forward their recommendations on eight specific subjects.
They will also identify problems related to water supply, sanitation and water management.
At the end of the summit, there will be ‘Dhaka Water Declaration’.
"It is not possible to attain SDG-6 alone.
We hope the Dhaka Water Summit 2017 will help attain targets of water-related issues which are mentioned in SDG-6," the minister said.Regarding waterlogging in the capital on Wednesday, the minister said, "We were not prepared to deal with such abnormal rainfalls on that day."

Water works: how a simple technology in Dhaka is changing the way people get clean water

Water works: how a simple technology in Dhaka is changing the way people get clean water.
Amy Pickering laughs when she thinks of all the things that went wrong with the impact evaluation she recently completed of a water chlorination project in the slums of Bangladesh’s capital city Dhaka: delays, monsoons, and more delays.
For Pickering, who specializes in water quality and diarrheal disease, the challenge was finding a water treatment technology that could work without electricity and operate in Dhaka’s extreme weather.
The impact evaluation study provides critical evidence on how to use simple, low-cost technology to make water safe in dense, urban areas that lack reliable energy sources.
Why focus on individual water points—in this case, handpumps or taps in communal areas—rather than create a centralized solution before the water is pumped to these water points?
They had already designed a chlorine doser for animals, and were in the process of adapting it for people and so we partnered with them for the evaluation.
It’s a very simple technology that doesn’t require electricity.
We had to convince them that chlorine water is safe and that it’s used throughout the developing world.
We plan to disseminate the results to the Bangladesh government and other organizations working on increasing access to safe water later this summer with the hopes that they are interested in implementing the chlorine dosers.
Public water in developed countries is generally very safe, but there are still contaminants, like lead, and I do sometimes worry about that when my kids drink.

Reducing Dhaka’s water crisis

Reducing Dhaka’s water crisis.
WATER crisis is the last thing Dhaka’s people would expect in the midst of Ramadan, although the city has a history of frequently-interrupted water supply.
Every summer, people face the agonising shortage of fresh drinking water in some neighbourhoods – with oft-repeated excuses from the authorities.
However, water scarcity can be extremely inconvenient during Ramadan.
Besides, this is arguably the hottest season and residents of Dhaka are already irritated by excessive traffic jams.
Despite numerous steps being taken in the past to reduce occasional water shortages, the residents of Rayer Bazar are having a difficult time.
Recently, WASA introduced a 24-hour hotline for city-dwellers to file complaints regarding problems with water supply but the authority is yet to bring a long-term solution.
Since Dhaka lacks an effective strategy or the means to permanently stop its water problems, an early warning system based on emergency directives to guide citizens during the crises can be adopted and maintained annually.
Furthermore, the government should ensure maximum level of water supply at least for the month of Ramadan.
Apart from public health, water is everyone’s fundamental right and hence nobody should be deprived of it.

Details sought of action taken to check air pollution

Details sought of action taken to check air pollution.
Kathmandu, April 11 The Ministry of Federal Affairs and Local Development has directed district coordination committees, metropolitan cities and municipalities of Kathmandu Valley to provide it with details of activities being undertaken to guarantee people’s right to live in a clean environment.
“All local levels are requested to explain in writing to the ministry as soon as possible what they have been doing to control pollution and protect human rights in accordance with the constitution and other laws in force while carrying out development activities in their jurisdiction,” read a letter written by Environment Management Section of the ministry yesterday.
Kathmandu has been dubbed as the seventh most polluted city in the world, thanks to environmental pollution.
Numbeo recently made public the pollution levels ranking of 290 cities around the world.
With pollution index 97.73, Kathmandu featured among the top ten along with Kabul, Afghanistan (103.92); Accra, Ghana (102.61); Tetovo, Macedonia (98.09); Faridabad, India (96.58); Cairo, Egypt (96.28) and Dhaka, Bangladesh (95.91); Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia (95.34); Karachi, Pakistan (95.29) and Ghaziabad, India (95.27).
The cities were listed on the basis of air pollution and water pollution/accessibility followed by other pollution types.
PM 2.5 indicates the matter present in the air that are 2.5 microns or below.
These particles include dust, coal particles exited from power plants and home heating, car exhaust, and pollen from plants among others.
A version of this article appears in print on April 12, 2017 of The Himalayan Times.

Mamata still only barrier to Teesta deal

The people in her state will suffer if the Teesta water has to be shared with Bangladesh as the river has already become dry, the chief minister reasoned.
Not only Bangladesh, even we are too facing irrigation problems,” news18.com reports.
Mamata said she had no ill intention of not sharing water with Bangladesh and proposed that the two countries set up a joint river commission to ascertain the level of water flowing through the Torsa River and the quantum of water that can be shared, reports the Times of India.
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