Launch services beteween Barishal and other parts of Bangladesh resumed on Saturday (November 18, 2023) morning after 24 hours of suspension due to the cyclonic storm Midhili. Abdur Razzaque, river port official of Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA), said the operation of launches resumed at 7 am after the affect of cyclone Midhili ended. Barishal Engineering College students say BCL activists beat them up for not attending ‘political programme’ Earlier, BIWTA suspended operations of all types of river vessels from 10:00 am on Friday due to inclement weather caused by the cyclone. Meanwhile, the roads in different parts of Barishal city have been inundated due to the rainfall triggered by the cyclonic. JCD leader, another arrested in Barishal for ‘planning sabotage’ The residents of Battala, Srinath Chatarjee Lane and Bogura Road have been trapped in 2-feet of water since the cyclone hit the country’s coastal areas. Khokon Serniabat takes charge as Barishal mayor
Advanced green technologies needs to be shared with all the developing Muslim countries: Environment Minister
Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change Md. Shahab Uddin said the Bangladesh, under the leadership of the Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, is trying its best to make the country climate resilient. But to drive a wider structural shift and foster sustainable transition in particularly climate vulnerable countries like Bangladesh, public funds from multilateral sources have to be prioritized, he said. Bangladesh is pursuing low-carbon green development: Environment Minister “The benefit of clean, green, and advanced green technologies needs to be shared with all the developing Muslim countries,” the environment minister said at the First Scientific Session on "Green Transformation in the Islamic World: Challenges and Opportunities" of the 9th Conference of Environment Ministers in the Islamic World held in Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia 19 October 2023. Environment minister Md. Shahab Uddin said, “We look forward to enhance our collaboration in the areas of environment, climate change and energy. We urge ICESCO members to consolidate our partnership to ensure environment-friendly green growth and make the world a safer and better place for our future generation.” Motorists to be trained to control noise pollution: Environment Minister He said Bangladesh Government strongly condemns atrocities by occupying Israel forces in Palestine, Indiscriminate Killing of civilian people, Large Scale destruction causing unprecedented sufferings of millions of Philistines in front of the Whole world. Abdulrahman Al-Fadley, minister of Environment, Water and Agriculture, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Dr. Salim M. Almalik, director general of ICESCO were present in the occasion. Abrupt honking should be stopped: Environment minister Other members of Bangladesh Delegation present in the conference were Iqbal Abdullah Harun, additional secretary (Admin), Mohammad Abdul Wadud Chowdhury, (joint secretary-Environment), and Mr. Md. Akhteruzzaman, private secretary to Minister (Joint Secretary), Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate change.
The world leaders have stressed that building resilience and tackling the adverse impact of climate change should be an urgent priority for all as the planet grapples with chaotic weather patterns. At the UN General Assembly high-level debate on Thursday, more than a dozen heads of state and government spotlighted the need for concrete climate measures, as opposed to mere promises, calling for reforming global financial institutions and unlocking funds for developing countries to allow them to catch up on the path to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. They also emphasised that the current exclusionary architecture, dominated by a few states, is failing to deliver the requisite resources, saying no meaningful climate action or development can take place in conditions of financial distress. Govt can't guarantee violence-free election without support from all: FM Momen Denis Sassou Nguesso, President of the Republic of Congo, cited climate as the most pressing of all emergencies and drew attention to the afforestation initiative that he undertook in his capacity as President of the Congo Basin Climate Commission. Pointing out that arable land in Africa must be protected from the impacts of climate change, he called for effective technical and financial partnerships. José Ramos-Horta, President of Timor-Leste, proposed to accelerate energy transition in fragile developing States by unlocking finance through debt alleviation, streamlining international finance at the lowest interest rates and increasing development assistance. Wesley Simina, President of the Federated States of Micronesia, implored all parties to the Paris Agreement — particularly major emitters — to commit to emissions reductions of at least half by 2030 and peg their net-zero goals no later than 2050. Uzra Zeya discusses Bangladesh's upcoming national election with PM Hasina: US Embassy Han Zheng, Vice-President of China, stressed the importance of the Paris accord and the need to stop building new coal-fired power projects abroad, and to vigorously support developing countries to create more green energy projects. For its part, he said, China will continue to prioritize ecological conservation and the advancement of green and low-carbon development. “Through Chinese modernization and rejuvenation, the country seeks to achieve harmony between humanity and nature while promoting ethical material advancement.” Jessica Alupo, Vice-President of Uganda, called on developed countries to fulfil their commitment, in line with the Paris Agreement, to provide $100 billion — annually, through 2025 — to developing countries to assist with mitigation and adaptation. Answering that call, Dan Jørgensen, Minister for Development Cooperation and Global Climate Policy of Denmark, said his government is increasing grant-based climate finance to its highest level ever this year, doubling its contribution to the Green Climate Fund next year, and tripling its contribution to climate finance in developing countries by 2030. Dhaka urges OIC members to contribute voluntary fund to bear legal expenses of Rohingya case “The world needs to better leverage the enormous potential of international financial institutions, and development banks must raise trillions of dollars for climate action and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),” he insisted. Kyriakos Mitsotakis, Prime Minister of Greece, said high temperatures resulting from global warming are driving threats of fires, heat waves and landslides in different countries. “While the world acts decisively on long-term mitigation, the international community is “collectively guilty in not placing enough emphasis on short-term adaptation” he said, calling for the creation of a global forum that can deliver access to new financing to drive such adaptation “before it is too late.” Meanwhile, UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ in a video message to the ministerial meeting of the least developed countries, pushed for a Climate Solidarity Pact in which all countries make extra efforts to reduce emissions this decade. “Developed countries must also present a clear and credible road map to double adaptation finance by 2025. The $100 billion goal must be met, and the Green Climate Fund must be fully capitalised,” he said.
Awards are the marks of recognition and encouragement given in honour of any special achievement in certain categories, which also signify the credibility and speciality of a person or any organization. Among all the prestigious awards recognizing deserving individuals and entities across the world, the Ramon Magsaysay Award, often referred to as the "Nobel Prize of Asia" stands in today's world as a very special, exclusive and significant one. The award was initiated as an annual badge of honour created to commemorate former Philippine President Ramon Magsaysay's example of honesty in administration, fearless service to the people, and realistic idealism within a democratic society. Established in 1957 by the New York-based Rockefeller Brothers Fund in cooperation with the Filippino Government, the Ramon Magsaysay Award celebrates the value of integrity, courage, and selfless service of Asian individuals impacting Asian landscapes. There is a reason behind elaborating on awards in this write-up, especially the Ramon Magsaysay Award in particular, as Korvi Rakshand, revered for his social activities as the founder of JAAGO Foundation, has been nominated for the 2023 Ramon Magsaysay Award in the Emergent Leadership category. With this year's award, Korvi Rakshand joins the distinguished list of 344 outstanding individuals and organisations whose selfless service has offered their societies, Asia, and the world, by offering successful solutions to some of the most intractable problems of human development. JAAGO Foundation Founder Korvi Rakshand wins Ramon Magsaysay Award for dedication to education, social change Through achieving this badge of honour, he also joined the prestigious Hall of Fame of 13 Bangladeshis who won the award in the past. The list includes prominent scientist Firdausi Qadri (2021), environmentalist and social activist Syeda Rizwana Hasan (2012), Founder and Executive Director of Centre for Disability in Development (CDD) AHM Noman Khan (2010), eminent journalist and Prothom Alo Editor Matiur Rahman (2005), eminent educationist Abdullah Abu Sayeed (2004), prominent social worker Angela Gomes (1999), revered village society reformer Mohammad Yeasin (1988), Co-Founder of the Notre Dame College in Dhaka Father Richard William Timm (1987), legendary pharmacist and Gonoshasthaya Kendra founder Dr Zafrullah Chowdhury (1985), Nobel Laureate and founder of Grameen Bank Dr Mohammad Yunus (1984), Brac founder Sir Fazle Hasan Abed (1980) and Tahrunnesa Abdullah in 1978, recognized for her pioneering role as a social reformer for Muslim women in society. From educating a little group of children at the capital's Rayer Bazaar slum to being nominated for the 2023 Ramon Magsaysay Award, Korvi Rakshand has been leading a revolutionary social transformation all over Bangladesh. For an afternoon chat to deep dive into Korvi Rakshan's role as a journeyman, Dhaka Courier recently visited his office at JAAGO's Banani headquarters in the capital. The entire office setting in the complex redirects as a memory lane of JAAGO's monumental journey for the past 16 years in the country, and within the short office tour and an exclusive interview with DC, Korvi Rakshand elaborated on the eventual past, present and future state of his esteemed organization. "The journey of JAAGO Foundation began in 2007 at the Rayer Bazaar slum in the capital, with the initial goal of teaching English to underprivileged children totally free of cost - because we thought this would help them conquer the language barriers in their next career steps, be it inside or outside the country. We were amazed to see the response of those 17 children as they asked about promotions to the next class, which made us realise that they envisioned our initiative as a school, and that led us to begin our first school in the Rayer Bazaar slum. Our efforts began to get recognized by society through several of our activities, but we realised the need to expand our efforts beyond Dhaka. We modelled a curriculum integration of both classroom-based and remote education that tremendously brought success in terms of educating children, especially in the difficult times during the pandemic, and now we are focusing on mainstream quality education and bridging the learning gaps with skill-based education to students who are unable to complete traditional studies. At present, JAAGO works with five focus areas - Education, Youth, Women, Climate Change and Governance, operated by more than 600 employees and more than fifty thousand volunteers across the country." JAAGO schools showcase 22 projects at Annual Science Fair The reason behind selecting the name: "In Bengali, the name 'Jaago' redirects to make someone wake up from sleep. Education is the light beam for society to get up and shine bright, and we consider it our responsibility to initiate the much-needed wake-up call with education. The bold, capitalised wording of JAAGO redirects as an invitation to everyone, to join our movement with love, support and contributions. The vibrant yellow colour is most commonly recognised as the colour of friendship, and that is what we do. We bridge the gap in society as its dedicated friend." On 'Volunteer for Bangladesh': Under Rakshand's visionary leadership, the JAAGO Foundation also initiated the Volunteer for Bangladesh (VBD) program in 2011. VBD has become a youth movement involving more than 50,000 leaders actively working for social betterment. "Although the initial aim and vision of the JAAGO Foundation was to focus on children and education, our responsibility increased upon witnessing the enthusiasm of the youth. We diversified our efforts, addressing various other issues including youth development and women's empowerment and eventually established the 'Volunteers for Bangladesh' (VBD) to bring together proactive individuals who could collaborate and contribute their energy and dedication to our activities. In VBD, our volunteers elect their local leaders and the power is completely decentralised to ensure the desired performances at the grassroots level." Winning the award: "I was travelling and was at an airport when I received a WhatsApp text from an unknown number. The person introduced herself as Susan Afan, President of the Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation, and wanted to initiate a video call. Initially, I assumed that she was going to discuss someone else, and it was really surprising to know when they informed me that I got selected for this year's Ramon Magsaysay Award. Turned out that they have been following the activities of JAAGO for the last five years, and knowing all these has been pretty surreal to me." The present and future: "In 2020, we obtained NGO licensing, enabling us to collaborate with various international organizations. Currently, we partner with organizations such as UNICEF, USAID, and FCDO, and many donors prefer to remain anonymous. At Jaago, anyone can sponsor a child's schooling by contributing BDT 2,000 each month. We introduced an exclusive scholarship program for women students in public universities, to ease their daily lives and economic conditions. Launched last year, we managed to help 100 students and have enlisted 160 students for 2023." "Accolades are obviously inspiring, but personally I think this award will help us thrive with more accountability. I would really consider myself successful when I see that our work motivates the youth to believe in their capacity to bring about change, and I firmly believe that our youths are that capable," Korvi Rakshand told DC, ending the conversation with gratitude. Read more: When local communities unite to co-create a better city: Jhenaidah shows the way
Children’s engagement to combat climate change is essential, said speakers at a discussion on Monday. ActionAid Bangladesh organised the event titled "Climate Crisis and its Impact on Children," aimed at empowering children to take a stand against climate change and its devastating impact on Bangladesh and the world. ADC Harun suspended for beating two BCL leaders The event was held at Bangladesh Mahila Samity's Dr Nilima Ibrahim Auditorium at New Bailey Road in the capital, according to a press release. "We want our children to live in a sustainable and livable environment by 2041. Making this possible is the responsibility of the government and our citizens," said Anisur Rahman, deputy commissioner of Dhaka. "Our world is facing an unprecedented climate crisis. The responsibility to address it falls on all of us. However, it is the children who will inherit the consequences of our actions or inaction. Therefore, their engagement is not just important; it is absolutely essential," he added. "Climate change is one of the most pressing challenges of our time, with Bangladesh being one of the most vulnerable nations. Approximately one in three children in Bangladesh—nearly 20 million children—are affected by extreme weather events, floods, river erosion, sea-level rise, and other environmental crises linked to climate change. ActionAid Bangladesh believes that engaging children in the fight for climate justice is vital to creating a sustainable and resilient future," said Farah Kabir, country director of ActionAid Bangladesh. Death toll from dengue rises to 741 with 11 more deaths"The climate crisis is not just an environmental issue; it is stealing children's futures, forcing them into labour, and robbing them of homes, education, and health. We must work together to bring climate justice for our children," said Dr Aparup Chowdhury, former secretary. A survey finding with responses from 300 children from eight districts was also unveiled at the event to present how climate change affects them. The survey was conducted by ActionAid Bangladesh in Satkhira, Gaibandha, Dinajpur, Sunamganj, Patuakhai, Kurigram, Bandarban, and Chattogram, said the release. Foreign exchange reserves fall below $22 billion According to the survey, due to climate change, the education of 123 children was hampered. Sixty children said they experience salinity in the water in their locality, while 58 respondents said climate change hampers cultivation activities. Fifty-three children stated they were impacted in many ways by calamities in the last three years, while four children said they faced health issues like allergies and respiratory problems. Two children said their families lost their house due to a climate-induced disaster, it also said. Arijit Chowdhury, former additional secretary, Ministry of Finance; Rumana Yasmin Ferdausi, deputy secretary, Legislative and Parliamentary Affairs Division, Ministry of Law and Rabeya Khandkar, additional director, Sustainable Finance Department, Bangladesh Bank, spoe at the discussion, among others.
UN Secretary-General António Guterres has issued a powerful call for increased global cooperation to address the “global emergency” of worsening air pollution. “Global problems require global solutions. We must act together for clean air,” said Guterres marking the International Day of Clean Air for Blue Skies on Thursday. The theme for the fourth annual International Day of Clean Air for blue skies, "Together for Clean Air", highlights the urgent need for stronger partnerships, increased investment, and share responsibility for overcoming air pollution. Read: Bangladeshis, Indians, Nepalis and Pakistanis expected to live 5 years less due to air pollution: AQLI “Together, we must accelerate a just and equitable transition away from fossil fuels, particularly coal, towards clean renewable energy, while ensuring that no one is left behind,” said Guterres. Airborne contaminants are one of the most significant environmental health risks. According to the UN World Health Organization (WHO), 99 per cent of the world’s population breathes polluted air, with the exposure significantly worse in low and middle-income countries. The pervasive nature of air pollution requires global collaboration. This year’s theme, Together for Clean Air, addresses the urgent need for stronger international partnerships, increased investment, and collective responsibility to cut air pollution. Read: Dhaka's air tops world's most polluted list once again Air pollution is defined as any chemical, physical, or biological contaminant that modifies the natural characteristics of the atmosphere. Household cookers and other combustion devices, cars, industrial facilities, and forest fires are the most common sources of air pollution. Air pollution exists both outdoors and indoors, and both severely impact human health. Pollutants which are particularly dangerous include carbon monoxide, ozone, nitrogen dioxide, and sulphur dioxide. Air pollution also includes PM2.5, inhalable particulate matter less than 2.5 micrometers in diameter – less than that of human hair. These particulates are invisible to the human eye and can penetrate deep into the lungs where they can cause inflammation, enter the bloodstream, and damage the heart and brain. Read: More rains likely across the country over 72 hours: BMD Exposure dramatically increases the risk of strokes, heart and lung disease, cancer, and other ailments, leading to over 6.7 million premature deaths annually, according to WHO. Air pollution also affects plants, reduces crop yields and impacts food security. It worsens social and gender inequality, and slows economic development, limiting the ability of countries to meet their development goals. “Exposure at any level can have health implications that impair quality of life and come with costs for the individual, our societies, and our economies,” said Martina Otto, head of the secretariat of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP)-convened Climate and Clean Air Coalition. Solutions to improve air quality vary based on local contexts and sectors. At the individual level, people can initiate change by making decisions that promote clean air, such as making environmentally friendly purchases and using cleaner methods of transportation and cooking. Businesses and corporations can add air quality to corporate social responsibility considerations, monitor and publicly report pollution emissions, and promote programmes that reduce emissions. Governments should create and enforce air pollution standards to achieve milestones outlined in the 2021 World Health Organization guidelines, in addition to increasing their capacity to monitor air quality. Read: Take concrete actions to address climate change, achieve SDGs: Speakers The International Day of Clean Air for blue skies, is commemorated on 7 September annually, was established in 2019 by the UN General Assembly, which recognized the importance of clean air and the impact of air pollution on human health and ecosystems, in particular its disproportionate affect on women, children and older persons.
UK Development Director and Deputy High Commissioner in Bangladesh Matt Cannell has said the devastating flooding in Sylhet last year and Chittagong division this year demonstrates Bangladesh’s vulnerabilities to the impacts of climate change. “The UK is proud to partner with the UN Resident Coordinator’s Office to support greater disaster preparedness, response, and recovery in Bangladesh. I am pleased to announce this during the government of Bangladesh and UNDP’s Disaster Resilience Week,” he said, announcing that the UK is providing £500,000 to the UN Resident Coordinator’s Office to support disaster preparedness, response and recovery in Bangladesh. Read: Teesta water sharing issue to be raised during Hasina-Modi talks in Delhi: FM The Deputy High Commissioner said this will help guarantee that disaster responses are coordinated and well-informed, and that more preparations are made ahead of disasters, limiting their impact and saving lives. “This builds on the UK's historic support for humanitarian response in Bangladesh and complements the Government of Bangladesh's remarkable work on disaster resilience and response to date,” he said. UN Resident Coordinator in Bangladesh Gwyn Lewis said the partnership with the UK will enhance coordination across the UN and NGOs in Bangladesh, and as a result strengthen support to the government of Bangladesh, and most importantly to the people most affected by natural disasters. “The impacts of climate change and the resulting intensity of disasters means this work is more important than ever. Our efforts are focused on better early warning systems, anticipatory action and a quick and timely response to emergencies and disasters,” she said. Read: Elevated expressway a big step towards Smart Bangladesh: Korean Ambassador This money will aid in the coordination of humanitarian assistance provided by the Government of Bangladesh, donors, the UN, and NGOs prior to, during, and after disaster events. It will also ensure that this help reaches the most vulnerable people with the most essential relief supplies, said the British High Commission in Dhaka on Sunday. Read: Bangladesh, Vietnam on right track to pursue $2bn trade target: Ambassador Furthermore, it will assist the government of Bangladesh in developing a new risk assessment and contingency plan for earthquakes, as well as expand its work on anticipatory actions and early warning systems to assist people in taking precautions to protect their lives before disasters strike.
Schools in New Delhi were forced to close Monday after heavy monsoon rains battered the Indian capital, with landslides and flash floods killing at least 15 people over the last three days. Farther north, the overflowing Beas River swept vehicles downstream as it flooded neighborhoods. In Japan, torrential rain pounded the southwest, causing floods and mudslides that left two people dead and at least six others missing Monday. Local TV showed damaged houses in Fukuoka prefecture and muddy water from the swollen Yamakuni River appearing to threaten a bridge in the town of Yabakei. New Delhi schools close after monsoon floods kill at least 15, Pakistan on alert for more flooding In Ulster County, in New York’s Hudson Valley and in Vermont, some said the flooding is the worst they’ve seen since Hurricane Irene’s devastation in 2011. Although destructive flooding in India, Japan, China, Turkey and the United States might seem like distant events, atmospheric scientists say they have this in common: Storms are forming in a warmer atmosphere, making extreme rainfall a more frequent reality now. The additional warming that scientists predict is coming will only make it worse. Heavy rains cause flooding and mudslides in southwest Japan, leaving 2 dead and at least 6 missing That’s because a warmer atmosphere holds more moisture, which results in storms dumping more precipitation that can have deadly outcomes. Pollutants, especially carbon dioxide and methane, are heating up the atmosphere. Instead of allowing heat to radiate away from Earth into space, they hold onto it. While climate change is not the cause of storms unleashing the rainfall, these storms are forming in an atmosphere that is becoming warmer and wetter. “Sixty-eight degrees Fahrenheit can hold twice as much water as 50 degrees Fahrenheit,” said Rodney Wynn, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Tampa Bay. “Warm air expands and cool air contracts. You can think of it as a balloon - when it’s heated the volume is going to get larger, so therefore it can hold more moisture.” 'Life threatening' flooding overwhelms New York roadways, killing 1 person For every 1 degree Celsius, which equals 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit, the atmosphere warms, it holds approximately 7% more moisture. According to NASA, the average global temperature has increased by at least 1.1 degrees Celsius (1.9 degrees Fahrenheit) since 1880. “When a thunderstorm develops, water vapor gets condensed into rain droplets and falls back down to the surface. So as these storms form in warmer environments that have more moisture in them, the rainfall increases,” explained Brian Soden, professor of atmospheric sciences at the University of Miami. Along Turkey’s mountainous and scenic Black Sea coast, heavy rains swelled rivers and damaged cities with flooding and landslides. At least 15 people were killed by flooding in another mountainous region, in southwestern China. 15 killed by floods in southwestern China as seasonal torrents hit mountain areas “As the climate gets warmer we expect intense rain events to become more common, it’s a very robust prediction of climate models,” Soden added. “It’s not surprising to see these events happening, it’s what models have been predicting ever since day one.” Gavin Schmidt, climatologist and director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, said the regions being hit hardest by climate change are not the ones who emit the largest amount of planet-warming pollutants. Better flood management: China offers assistance for dredging rivers in Bangladesh “The bulk of the emissions have come from the industrial Western nations and the bulk of the impacts are happening in places that don’t have good infrastructure, that are less prepared for weather extremes and have no real ways to manage this,” said Schmidt.
Protesters and legislators converged on the European Union parliament Tuesday as the bloc prepared a cliffhanger vote on protecting its threatened nature and shielding it from disruptive environmental change, in a test of the EU's global climate credentials. Spurred on by climate activist Greta Thunberg, a few hundred demonstrators demanded that the EU pushes through a bill to beef up the restoration of nature in the 27-nation bloc that was damaged during decades of industrial expansion. A counterdemonstration of farmers demanded a slower approach that would lessen the impact on their income. Inside the legislature in Strasbourg, France, parliamentarians put in last-minute efforts to sway Wednesday's vote, which could push a key part of the EU's biodiversity protection plans off the table. The legislature's environment committee last month was deadlocked at 44-44 on it. Recent events that indicate Earth's climate has entered uncharted territory The bill is a key part of the EU's vaunted European Green Deal that seeks to establish the world's most ambitious climate and biodiversity targets and make the bloc the global point of reference on all climate issues. The plans proposed by the EU's executive commission set binding restoration targets for specific habitats and species, with the aim by 2030 to cover at least 20% of the region's land and sea areas. "This is really a crunch moment, not only for Green Deal, but also whether Europe stands by its word," said Greens leader Terry Reintke. "Are we the ones that are talking and telling us what to do but not doing it ourselves?" Climate change keeps making wildfires and smoke worse. Scientists call it the 'new abnormal' The EU's executive commission wants the nature restoration law to be a key part of the system since it is necessary for the overall deal to have the maximum impact. Others say that if the EU fails on the nature restoration law, it would indicate an overall fatigue on climate issues. The bill long looked like a shoo-in as it gathered widespread support in member nations and was staunchly defended by the EU's executive commission and its president Ursula von der Leyen. But von der Leyen's own political group, the Christian Democrat European People's Party, turned sour on it and now vehemently opposes it, claiming it will affect food security and undermine the income of farmers and disgruntle a European population focused more on jobs and their wallets. Like some nations and leaders, they want to hit pause such far-reaching climate legislation. Bangladesh to get assistance on priority basis to deal with climate change impacts, natural disasters.: UN ASG Mami "For the next five years we have to care a lot about our industrial base. You have to care a lot about competitiveness in the European Union. So we have to manage the big changes needed in a way that we don't lose economic power," said EPP chief Manfred Weber. As the largest group, with 177 seats in the 705-seat legislature, its opposition has been key in turning the issue into a hot political debate. And on Tuesday few ventured to predict which way the vote would go. The member states have already agreed by a large majority to back a slightly more flexible version of the bill. If parliament backs the plan on Wednesday both institutions would sit down to broker a final layout in the second half of the year. The commission has said there is no reason to reject the plan now as too rigid, since there is still time for compromises on many of the issues. EU Environment Commissioner Virginijus Sinkevicius said the commission would show "openness to revisit and improve certain provisions and to enhance clarity, making sure the proposal reflects the current reality." If parliament rejects the plan Wednesday, it would be sent back to the drawing board and it's unlikely anything would emerge ahead of the June EU parliament elections next year. And that would undermine the EU's credibility abroad since it has put so much into its vaunted Green Deal. "This law is nothing less than the flagship initiative of the European Green Deal," Sinkevicius said. The Green Deal includes a wide range of measures, from reducing energy consumption to sharply cutting transportation emissions and reforming the EU's trading system for greenhouse gases. Beyond environmental protesters, hundreds of international scientists and even a large group of multinationals have called for the adoption of the EU's nature restoration law.
Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre (FFWC) predicted that the flood situation in low-lying areas of Netrokona districts may improve in 24 hours. FFWC, in its regular bulletin, said Brahmaputra River remains unchanged but Jamuna river water is in a rising trend, which may continue in 24 hours starting from 9 am on Thursday (July 06, 2023). Read: Rise in Teesta water may cause short-term flood in Lalmonirhat, Nilphamari in 24 hours: FFWC warns Water in the Ganga-Padma Rivers is in a rising trend, which may continue in 72hours, it reads. Besides, major rivers in the northeastern region of the country are in a falling trend except Khowai, Monu and Dhalai, which may continue in 48 hours, the bulletin said. Read more: Better flood management: China offers assistance for dredging rivers in Bangladesh