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12 November, 2019 12:52:48 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 12 November, 2019 06:39:44 PM
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Global warming blamed for frequent cyclones

Rafiqul Islam Azad, Dhaka
Global warming blamed for frequent cyclones
A woman in Koyra upazila of Khulna gathers belongings yesterday from her house grounded by cyclone Bulbul that left a trail of destruction in coastal areas of the country on Sunday. AFP PHOTO

The severe cyclone Bulbul, which hit Bangladesh yesterday, is the outcome of global warming, say climate change experts. This time of the year is known for cyclones of the Bay of Bengal, but the intensity and frequency have increased over the years, indicating the influence of global warming, they observed. The experts also forecast that the country may witness more severe cyclones in future due to climate change. They suggested that the government should take special care for the development of the mangrove forest of the Sundarbans, which, they said, has shielded Bangladesh to some extent from the ferocity of cyclones, including the one on Monday. "Bulbul" left at least 16 people dead and caused massive damage to property and crops.

Bulbul hit the country only after six months of another cyclone, Fani, which experts described as one of the most severe cyclones in the last 40 years. Records show that 12 severe cyclones or storms formed in the Bay of Bengal in around 12 years from 2007, one in a year on an average. But two major cyclones hit Bangladesh only within six months, and this indicates the density of climatic catastrophe.

Cyclone Sidr on November 15, 2007 was severe and left over 3,500 people dead. Aila on May 27-29 was another severe cyclone that left 150 people dead and destroyed two lakh houses and damaged three lakh acres of crops.

The other cyclones that formed in the Bay of Bengal during the period are Akash, Rashmi, Bijli, Viyaru, Komen, Roanu, Dianmu, Mora, Fani and Bulbul.

Talking to The Independent, Prof. Ainun Nishat, an Emeritus Professor at the Centre of Climate Change and Environmental Research, BRAC University, said in terms of increase of density and frequency, cyclones like Bulbul could be related to the impact of climate change. Although formation of cyclones at this time is usual, but the density and frequency of could be related to climate change, he said.

Ainun Nishat, a pioneering expert of water resource management and climate change in Bangladesh, forecast that more severe cyclones will come in future. “The frequency and density of cyclones are going to increase," he added.

Dr Atiq Rahman, a prominent environmentalist, scientist and development expert, said Bulbul was formed in a severe form, but it hit Bangladesh in a weakened manner, after it hit West Bengal first and the Sunderbans shielded the country from its severity.

“Bulbul is related to climate change because it came only after six months of Fani. Besides, four cyclones formed in the Arabian Sea and cyclones also hit many countries like the USA. These severe cyclones indicate the impact of climate change,” he said.

Dr Atiq Rahman, who is also executive director of the Bangladesh Centre for Advanced Studies, said there are two indicators of climate change — frequency and density. These have been found in the recent climatic incidents.

He called upon the government to protect the Sundarbans that has shielded the country and its people from more severe damage. According to mythologist Bajlur Rashid, the factor of cyclones and pattern of weather have changed and are causing severe climatic incidents. He mentioned that many cyclones formed in the Arabian Sea this year, which was unusual.

MK/SI

 

 

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Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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