Integrated Water Resources Management in the Barind areas


By promoting the coordinated, equitable and sustainable development and management of water, land and related resources, and addressing the institutional challenges associated with integrated water resources management, the project intends to ensure access to sufficient and safe water for the disadvantaged people of the Barind tracts in North-Western Bangladesh.   

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Bangladesh
Governance
Water
Decentralisation
Water sector policy
Water supply
01.07.2018 - 30.06.2022
CHF 5'500'000
Background The Barind tract in North-Western Bangladesh is a dry area classified as “hard-to-reach” by the Government of Bangladesh with above-average incidences of poverty, marginalization and water scarcity (the latter because of over-abstraction, changing rain patterns and contamination). Barind presents a paradox wherein food security goals – attained through year round cropping supported by massive proliferation of deep tube led ground water irrigation – tend to undermine drinking water security goals. This has a strong bearing on issues of water governance in Barind, where the Ministry of Agriculture and its affiliated agencies focus on food security at the detriment of coordination and regulation required to protect ground water sources and drinking water security. Though the Bangladesh Water Act (2013) provides a legal framework to implement integrated water resources management (IWRM), it remains a challenge to ensure coordination amongst different sectors linked to water use and management as IWRM is still in its early stages.
Objectives The enabling framework of Bangladesh Water Rules and Guidelines support sub-national institutions to increase the availability of water for disadvantaged people in the Barind areas through sustainable, effective, inclusive management and use of water resources, thereby improving local livelihood systems and protecting people from health risks related to use of unsafe water.
Target groups
  • The people affected by water scarcity and limited access to water resources, i.e. 280’000 direct and about 815’000 indirect beneficiaries in 39 unions and 3 urban municipalities in the Naogaon, Chapai Nawabganj and Rajshahi districts
  • 70% of the beneficiaries will be disadvantaged, i.e. poor and living in hard-to-reach communities, at least 50% will be women.
  • Local Government Institutions of partnering unions, municipalities and upazilas
  • The Ministry of Water Resources and Local Government division of the government and other agencies
Medium-term outcomes

Outcome 1: Citizens and LGIs, in coordination with other stakeholders in the region, effectively ensure availability of water through participatory IWRM processes

Outcome 2: Functional decentralised integrated water resource management committees address regional water resource issues

Outcome 3: Policy framework supports information flow and participatory water resource  planning 

Results

Expected results:  

Outcome 1:

Output 1.1  Citizens, particularly disadvantaged, engage with LGIs in integrated water resource management process to fulfill their right to water

Output 1.2 LGIs ensure sufficient water supply to underserved population

Output 1.3. Citizens and LGIs co-finance integrated water resource management interventions

Outcome 2:

Output 2.1. LGIs apply BWA Rules and Guidelines

Output 2.2. Decentralized committees implement IWRM measures to reduce water stress in the region.

Outcome 3:

Output 3.1. Improved information flow following adoption of expert group directives

Output 3.2. Barind Participatory Water Management Plan formulated

Output 3.3 Water information directive widely disseminated among state and non-state actors


Results from previous phases:  

Despite an erosion of the enabling environment for improved downward accountability in local governance throughout Bangladesh, the project developed a range of instruments that strengthen the integrated management of water resources in the Barind. This includes:

  • The project directly benefited 200’596 people through various integrated water resource management interventions of which 101’089 were female and 99’507 were male. Indirectly, these interventions benefitted 604’360 people with 328’903 being male while 275’457 were female.
  • 994 water resource management committees identified actions to reduce, re-use & recycle water resources and submitted plans that were included in the Annual Development Plans of their respective local government and deliberated in open budget meetings with citizens.
  • Local government institutions responded to the demand of citizens by the excavation of 109 ponds and 4.85 km of earthen canals; the installation of drinking (28 km) and irrigation (8.2 km) pipelines; the provision of 5 dams and 3 check dams; upgrading 2 km of irrigation canals; the provision of 73 managed aquifer recharge systems and 94 rain water harvesting systems; the support for solar powered drip irrigation systems and the installation of 48 monitoring wells
  • 16% of the total investment costs were raised as contribution from the Union Parishads (100’376 CHF) and beneficiaries (197’954 CHF).
  • Approximately 12’000 people (comprising 37% disadvantaged, 22% ethnic minority and 15% extreme poor) directly engaged with integrated water resource management initiatives and its mainstreaming with Local Government Institutions.
  • Preparation of the Bangladesh Water Rules (2018) including inter-ministerial approval to issue the Bangladesh Water Rules
  • Incorporation of civil society and local government experiences in the Union Water Guidelines (2018) and consultation surrounding the Bangladesh Water Rules.
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Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Development cooperation
Project partners Contract partner
Foreign state institution
Swiss Non-profit Organisation
  • Sub-National State SouthEast
  • Swiss Red Cross


Coordination with other projects and actors HYSAWA, HLP, LOGIN
Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF   5'500'000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF   2'100'000
Project phases Phase 2 01.07.2018 - 30.06.2022   (Current phase) Phase 1 01.08.2014 - 30.06.2018   (Completed)