Environment Management Programme (SEMP):
overwhelmingly dependent on environmental and natural resources, but
the economic and societal forces at work coupled with other natural
and technical factors, may have already seriously eroded the natural
resource base of the country which could have serious adverse impact
on output, income and employment.
Efforts are being made to
address these issues by the Government, donors, political parties,
NGOs and other advocacy groups. The government has been giving some
attention to this sector. Among others it has approved the National
Environment Management Action Plan (NEMAP) in 1996. NEMAP was
formulated through a massive consultative process involving 23
grassroots workshops, 7 regional workshops and 7 professional and
expert group workshops. The Plan has prioritised 57 actions on the
environmental front and the government is in the process of creating
a second-order priority list for immediate implementation. NEMAP is
in line with Agenda 21 and the Rio Earth Summit of 1992.
In 1997, as a follow-up to
NEMAP, the Government approved US $ 26 million UNDP funded
programme on Sustainable Environment Management Programme (SEMP).
Under the programme, Letters of Agreement were signed between the
Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF) and the heads of twenty
agencies of the government departments, NGOs and other national and
international organizations. This is the largest ever environmental
grant provided by UNDP globally.The programme will unite the
government and other development agencies in Bangladesh including
NGOs and the private sector dealing with major environmental issues
under an umbrella national programme to address national environment
Activities under SEMP will
be undertaken in five main areas for implementation in Bangladesh
related to policy and institutions, participatory eco-system
management at grass root-level, community based environmental
sanitation, awareness and advocacy, and training and education.
It is expected that the
partnership of the private sector, government and other development
agencies in the programme will help strengthen government efforts in
poverty alleviation through adoption of environmental measures
leading to sustainable use of resources and management and for
sustainable human development.