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Renewable energy: Addressing environmental issues in Bangladesh

Hossain, A. and Marinova, D. (2007) Renewable energy: Addressing environmental issues in Bangladesh. In: Renewable Energy for Sustainable Development in the Asia Pacific Region Conference, 4-8 February 2007, Fremantle, Western Australia pp. 9-13.

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Undesirable synergies are being witnessed in Bangladesh between disrupted environmental norms, an increasing demand for energy and widening poverty. The country has experienced natural mishaps throughout its history, but not as frequently as they are happening currently. The trend of untimely appearance of floods, droughts and cyclones is now common and it affects harvests and normal living. Other environmental problems such as desertification, rapid loss of biodiversity, silting of rivers, rising temperature, salinisation, arsenical contamination of potable water and destabilisation of mangrove forests, all are emerging phenomena requiring mitigation measures. All these phenomena affect harvest and economic safety, they beget poverty which in turn predisposes the poor to have more children for security. This in tum puts pressures on the country's resource base in terms of exploitation beyond its natural regeneration capacity. In addition, traditional and modem systems of using primary energy source have also contributed to environmental degradation and climate change (Hossain, 200 1 :210).

The rising need for energy sources, coupled with population growth and economic development, continues to push the unsustainable exploitation of the country's limited natural resources. There is a need for a different approach to combat this trend and the paper argues for the endorsement of renewable energy as an optimal solution. In addition to the environmental benefits, these types of technologies offer the benefits of being relatively small-scale with the potential to be home based which fits well within the village culture of the country (Hossain and Marinova, 2003).

Item Type: Conference Paper
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Institute for Sustainability and Technology Policy
Publisher: American Institute of Physics
Copyright: © 2007 American Institute of Physics
Notes: Appears in AIP Conference Proceedings Volume 941, 2007, pp 9 - 13.
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