Information on Disaster Risk Reduction of the Member Countries

The Bangladesh national flag

Bangladesh Map

General Information

Formal name: People's Republic of Bangladesh
Bangladesh is located in South Asia, bordered by between India and Myanmar, and faces the Bay of Bengal. Land area is 147,570 square kilometers. Bangladesh is a low-lying deltaic country in South Asia formed by the Ganges, the Brahmaputra and the Meghna rivers. More than 310 rivers and tributaries have made this country a land of rivers. Most of the country is covered with flat alluvial plain, yet there are hills in the southeast part. The country has the world’s longest unbroken sandy beach of 120km, sloping gently down to the blue waters of the Bay of Bengal. Bangladesh has a tropical monsoon climate characterized by wide seasonal variations in rainfall, high temperatures, and high humidity. Three seasons are generally recognized: a hot, muggy summer from March to June; a hot, humid and rainy monsoon season from June to November; and a warm-hot, dry winter from December to February.
The capital is Dhaka. Out of 157,220,520 people, 98 percent are the Bengali, among them 90.4% Muslim, 8.2 percent Hindu, 0.7 percent Buddhist and 0.6 percent Christians.

Overview of Disasters

Bangladesh has a long history of natural disasters. Between 1980 and 2008, it experienced 219 natural disasters. The geographical location, land characteristics, multiplicity of rivers and the monsoon climate render Bangladesh highly vulnerable to natural hazards. The coastal morphology of Bangladesh influences the impact of natural hazards on the area. Bangladesh suffers from floods, cyclones, storm surge, river bank erosion, earthquake, drought, salinity intrusion, fire and tsunami. Cyclones and floods particularly caused massive damages. Cyclones occurred in 1970, 1991, 2007 and 2009 and killed 364,000, 136,000, 3,363 and 190 respectively.

Recent Major Disasters

Cyclone Aila (May 2009)

Cyclone Aila hit the Bangladesh on Monday 25 May 2009 and has produced substantial damage across areas of southern Bangladesh. It caused 190 immediate deaths, injuries to 7,103 people and more than 500,000 people to become homeless. The total damage was US$1.7 billion.

Cyclone Sidr (November 2007)

Cyclone Sidr hit the coastal areas on 15 November 2007. It affected 87,000 people, killed 3,363 and injured 55,282.

Cyclone (April 1991)

A cyclone occurred in April 1991 in Chittagong killed 138,000 people. The total damage was UD$1.5 billion.

Disaster Management System

Legal System

In order to manage the paradigm shift in disaster management, a disaster management regulative framework is established which comprises of following legal basis:
Disaster Management Act (Bengali);
National Plan for Disaster Management (2010-15);
Standing Orders on Disaster (SOD);
National Disaster Management Policy (Draft);
Emergency Preparedness Plan for Cyclone, and
Earthquake Preparedness Measures.

Organization

Organization Chart Click Here

A series of inter-related institutions, at both national and sub-national levels have been created for disaster management. As per the Rules of Business of the Government of Bangladesh, the Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief (MoDMR) is mandated to formulate policies, prepare plans, and monitor and coordinate all aspects of disaster activities. The field level activities of MoDMR are carried out by two subordinate offices e.g. the Department of Disaster Management (DDM) and Cyclone Preparedness Programme (CPP), While DDM is responsible for dissemination of all information on natural disasters, including flood information at community level, flood preparedness, awareness raising and capacity building activities, and also is responsible for conducting relief and rehabilitating operations with the help of district and upazila administrations.
The Comprehensive Disaster Management Programme (CDMP) is established to support the disaster management activities of relevant organizations as well as MoDMR.

Plan

The National Plan for Disaster Management defines in broad outline the systemic and institutional mechanisms under which disaster risk reduction and emergency response management is undertaken in Bangladesh. It outlines disaster management vision, strategic goals and conceptual framework. It establishes disaster management regulative and planning frameworks, and identifies priority areas for disaster risk reduction and emergency response management.

National Plan for Disaster Management (2010-15)

ADRC Counterpart

Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief