Delft, The Netherlands, 17 May 2022

Cities and towns key to Bangladesh’s sustainable development

Investments in climate resilient urban infrastructure in Bangladesh are vital to increase productivity and boost economic growth. At the same time, cities need to address climate risks and provide better living conditions. How to tackle this challenge was among topics discussed as Md. Tazul Islam, Bangladeshi Minister of Local Government, Rural Development & Cooperatives visited IHE Delft 13 May as part of preparations for the Bangladesh Delta Plan 2100 conference.

The Bangladesh Delta Plan 2100 Conference, to be held 26 and 27 May in Dhaka, will look at challenges in the implementation of the Delta Plan 2100, a long- term integrated program aiming to create a safe, climate resilient and prosperous delta. IHE Delft is co-organizing a session on Urban Hotspots at the conference, to be chaired by Minister Islam.

The session aims to foster agreement among stakeholders on a joint pathway towards fast and wide implementation of pilot projects called Urban Demonstrators. These use limited but effective incentives for towns and cities to create tangible and rapid development impacts on the ground.

“We have to demonstrate small-scale innovations in urban infrastructure to accomplish rapid upscaling across our small towns and in areas where we expect rapid development and growth. Only then can we tackle these systemic issues in our water management,” Minister Islam said.

Small towns, known as pourashavas in Bangladesh, and growth centres like cities play a key role for sustainable development in Bangladesh, which is undergoing rapid urbanisation. Despite improvements in some areas, most towns and cities need significant financial support to introduce and use climate-resilient urban infrastructure that is needed to improve quality of life sustainably. IHE Delft Professor Chris Zevenbergen, who will moderate the Urban Hotspots breakout session, said a comprehensive approach was needed for progress.

“Smart and climate-resilient water management action requires inclusive, practical action, pilots and peer-learning to strengthen institutional capacity, governance and awareness,” he said.

Share

Connect with us

Never miss a thing!