Promoting the climate-adapted resource management of drinking water

Strengthening Institutions for Climate-Adapted Drinking Water Resources Management in Dhaka, Bangladesh

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  • Client

    German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)

  • Country
  • Political sponsors

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  • Runtime

    2022 to 2025

  • Products and expertise

    Climate, environment, management of natural resources

Context

Dhaka's primary source of drinking water is groundwater, but this resource is at risk due to overextraction and climate change effects. This puts supply security at risk, particularly for vulnerable and marginalised communities. In addition, the rivers surrounding Dhaka are subject to significant pollution from urban and industrial sources. The main contributing factors to this are rapid urbanization, unplanned construction without public consultation, swift industrial growth and insufficient capacity and collaboration among authorities to monitor water quality and enforce environmental regulations. The lack of incentives and capabilities in industries to develop and execute pollution reduction strategies further exacerbates the problem.

To ensure a safe drinking-water supply for Dhaka's residents in the long term that also pays heed to environmental factors, the Bangladesh government is working to transition the city's water supply from groundwater to surface water as a strategic response to climate change. This plan involves sourcing water from the Meghna River, located outside Dhaka, and then channeling it to the Saidabad III drinking water treatment facility for treatment. Ensuring the water quality of the Meghna River is a crucial aspect for the success of this initiative.

Objective

The institutional and technical foundations to ensure water quality in the Meghna River have been improved at the level of the actors involved in Bangladesh.

Water flow of the Meghna River

Approach

The project activities include:

  • Establishing a coordination process to align measures to protect the quality of water in the Meghna River in line with the Meghna River master plan.
  • Setting up an integrated water quality monitoring system to improve the institutional capabilities required to maintain suitable water quality and ensure safe water supply.
  • Enhancing the capacities of large-scale industries and SMEs to minimise water pollution.

Last update: April 2023