World Water Day: Water and Agricultural Jobs

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Juwel Hasan

The theme of World Water Day 2016 – water and jobs – focuses on how sufficient quantity and quality of water can change workers’ lives and livelihoods and even transform societies and economies.

Bangladesh is a watery country compare with some developed country. The cultivable area of Saudi Arabia has been estimated at 52.7 million hectares (ha), which is almost 25% of the total area. In 1992, the cultivated area was 1,608,000 ha, of which 1,512,500 ha consisted of annual crops and 95,500 ha consisted of permanent crops. Due to insufficient of water decrease not only cultivable area but also food production.

The total water area covering only about 5.5% of the total area of Egypt, the Nile Valley and some parts of the delta are marshy and water-logged lands. In Egypt most of people suffering for want of water and also there is low water resource.

Japan’s total area is 377,923.1 km2 (145,916.9 sq mi), of which 374,834 km2(144,724 sq mi) is land and 3,091 km2 (1,193 sq mi) water.

The total area of the United Kingdom according to the World Bank is approximately 241,930 square kilometers of which only 3230 sq km area is covered by water.

But in case of Bangladesh, total area is 147,570 sq km and covering 100, 90 sq km by water.

Saudi Arabia, Japan, Egypt and United Kingdom are developed and large countries than Bangladesh. But there is good source of water and availability of water compare with these developed countries.

Here I want to give other references of water body in Bangladesh.

  1. Inland Fisheries
Environment Water Area (ha)
i. Rivers and Estuaries 853,863

(21.10%)

ii. Sundarban (water resources

in forest)

177,700

(4.38%)

iii. Beel (deepest part of the

floodplain)

114,161

(2.82%)

iv. Kaptai lake 68,800

(1.70%)

v. Floodplain 2,832,792

(70.00%)

Total inland open-waters 4,047,316

2. Marine fisheries

Environment Water Area
i. Coastal Area 2.30 million ha
ii. Coast line (along the Bay of Bengal) 710 km
iii. Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) 200-mile
Total Marine Water (including EEZ) 166,000 sq km

Now we can say Bangladesh as developing and small country and it is a country of ease available of water that indicates water is a blessing element of our country. On the other hand, Bangladesh is agro-based or agricultural country because of easily available of water. In this country agricultural job diversity is increasing day by day. As a result most of the people of our country depend on agro profession and also this sector is developing day by day and contributes in our economics problem. Only these can possible for easily available of water. The people of Bangladesh decided to different work in agricultural sector for their lives such as farmer, fishermen, poultry farmer, veterinarian, farm workers and labors, horticulturists etc. These jobs are directly related with water.

Fish Farmers

In Bangladesh 65% people are farmer and they are directly depend on water. Bangladesh also has some agro processing industry which is directly involved with sufficient quality and quantity of water and around this area there is availability of water. In these industries, many people are working for not only their lives but also the society and ultimately help to improve economics problem. Some agro processing industries are-

Poultry farm

  • Poultry broiler farm
  • Poultry layer farm
  • Poultry (broiler/layer) hatchery
  • Poultry farm related/dependent project

Dairy farm

  • Milk production
  • Milk collection, milk processing (ghee, butter, pasteurized milk etc production) and marketing

Exportable items

  • Fish processing
  • Dehydration plant (for dry fish processing)
  • Salting and Dehydration of Jew fish.
  • Vegetables

Others

  • Chittagong fish processing industry
  • Fish, poultry, duck and goose hatchery

India built some barrage or dam against Bangladesh such as Farakka Barrage is a barrage across the Ganges River, Tipaimukhi Dam is an embankment dam on the river Barak in Manipur. Due to this barrage or dam freshwater do not flow in the Bangladesh. As a result people not only suffer for water but also the saline water enters in the coastal region. The crops do no cultivate easily because of freshwater problem. More than four decades after India built the Farakka barrage on the Ganga, downstream Bangladesh continues to face problems with rivers drying up forcing people to migrate from their homes. The people do not earn money from agricultural site but before construction of Farakka or Tipaimukhi dam people earned money easily.

Farakka Barrage

In many countries, groundwater level decrease day by day in the soil. People do not get water by digging several feet of soil. Ultimately, they do not able to produce crops and suffer a lot.

Water scarcity

In sub- saharan African countries such as Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon and so on get problem of water scarcity. Due to water scarcity, food production decreases day by day. As a result people faces negative impact of decreasing food production as well as society also faces this problem.

We have to create new water related jobs. Then we can protect our water contribute to improve our economy. We can use our nonuse able ponds for aquaculture. We can utilize floodplain, beels, haor, baor and lake for recreational fishery. Overall people get good opportunity of agro based job and can proper use of water. We can use our marine environment for mericulture. In Bay of Bengal there are some economically important resources which are not use for anything. We can use this important resource for create new water related jobs.

Recreational fishery

Agro industries are very important for produce different types of food. We know that we have five fundamental demands and one of the demand is food which is come from agricultural sector and the raw material of other demand also come from agriculture. So we have to build new agro industries.

Bangladesh is a watery country. Sometime we forget that water is very important for our life and waste water day by day. We are very insincere to protect our worthy water. Sometime we pollute water by throwing our daily dirty things. But we need to proper arrange our water resource in agricultural sector for developing of our agricultural jobs and human welfare. As an example, we can use our pond water in agricultural field during harvest of fishes. We also give an attention in natural water resource because these resources may be harmful by human activities. Finally we can say that better water, better jobs.

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