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Prospects of climate resilient infrastructure in the low-income informal settlements of Dhaka - A community approach

This thesis focuses on the prospects of climate resilient infrastructure in the low-income settlements of Dhaka city. Numerous research findings show that low-income communities of Dhaka are living in the hazard prone areas with poor housing, sanitation and drainage facilities. These communities are at high risk of predicted climate change impacts and may be unable to avoid the direct and indirect impacts of climatic disasters. Most of the houses are below the ground level of Dhaka city and remain inundated after heavy rainfall or flood. In this context, this research undertook a community approach to explore the required measures for building climate resilience in the infrastructures of low-income settlements. Special attention was given on the impacts of heavy rainfall and storms and how they affect the infrastructure system. This study selected Beguntila slum and New Purba Kurmitola Camp as a sample after carefully evaluating the selection criteria for this research. To derive information from the field, this study applied qualitative data collection techniques. Reconnaissance surveys were conducted on both slums to get a primary idea about the vulnerabilities of these slums. In this study, separate male and female focus group discussions were conducted in both slums. Ten key community experts were also selected for the key informant interviews. Drawing on qualitative data collected through focus group discussions and key informant interviews, this study examines the infrastructural vulnerabilities of these slums due to climate change impacts. It then identifies the root causes for these vulnerabilities. Finally, it outlines the required measures for establishing climate resilient infrastructure in these settlements. The findings demonstrate that the key reason for these vulnerabilities on infrastructure due to heavy rainfall is inefficiency of current drainage system in the slum areas. This situation becomes even worse in absence of a functioning sewerage system. The tin-shed houses were found to be very weak and unable to withstand strong winds during storms. It was also found that electric poles could collapse on tin-shed houses and roads causing injuries to slum dwellers. The analysis finds that poverty is the most impeding factor for the advancement of the slum infrastructure. To conclude, the study urges the need for collective effort by government and NGOs to address the issues and take a range of structural and non-structural measures to build climate resilience in the low-income settlements of Dhaka city.
Type of thesis
Rahman, S. (2018). Prospects of climate resilient infrastructure in the low-income informal settlements of Dhaka - A community approach (Thesis, Master of Environmental Planning (MEP)). The University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10289/12313
The University of Waikato
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