Saturday, 3 June, 2023

Thank Allah, Mocha did not hit hard

Thank Allah, Mocha did not hit hard

With respect to maximum sustained wind speed at its centre to the tune of more than 200 kilometres, Mocha was considered as one of the severe most tropical cyclones that have ever swept over Bangladesh. It was apprehended that Mocha would assume as devastating proportion or more as Sidr or Aila. The offshore islands and low lying areas along the coastal belt were supposed to experience heavy to very heavy rainfall and swept by 10 to 12 feet tidal surge. Due to the likely heavy precipitation, landslide in the hilly regions was also feared.

Extensive preparations were made to save life and properties. Thousands of people rushed to cyclone centres. Forces including the army, police and Ansars as well as civilian volunteers were deployed to tackle any aftermath. The cyclone made the landfall and crossed the Cox’s Bazar-North Myanmar coasts at around three in the evening. However, as the cyclone started weakening well before landfall, no damages were reported till the drafting of this editorial.

Irrespective of whether a particular cyclone proved to be damaging or not, climate-induced disasters like erratic weather incidents, floods, draughts and saline water intrusion are usually very damaging along the coasts of the Bay of Bengal, particularly in such low lying countries as Bangladesh. And such disasters are quite large in number and visit the country almost annually, with incalculable fury and ferocity. Besides causing immense harm to the life and economy of the people, calamities lead to displacement of huge number of people affected by climate change and global warming. Despite no or very insignificant greenhouse gas emission, Bangladesh is one of the countries that are worst affected by climate realities.

Though the government has been implementing various mitigation and adaptation programmes, it is not possible on the part of a single country to fend off climate change impacts. International communities, especially the developed countries that are mainly responsible for global warming, must organise compensation and mitigation funds to help affected countries overcome the disastrous impacts of climate change. But regrettably their actions are not proportionate to their words and promises. A bleak future awaits the affected countries.