Progress on achieving SDG 6
2020 Voluntary National Review
In Bangladesh the percentage of people with access to safely managed drinking water services increased to 47.9%, and the percentage of people with access to safely managed sanitation services reached 84.6%. It was also reported that 74.8% of the population used handwashing facilities with soap and water in 2019. Additionally, Bangladesh highlighted the successful relocation of tanneries from Hazaribag of Dhaka to Savar, the outskirts of the capital, because waste from the tanneries was heavily polluting the Buriganga River. To prevent future pollution, a central effluent treatment plant has been established at Savar, which will treat the effluents before discharging into the Dhaleswari River.
Bangladesh further reported facing a number of challenges in the past year related to SDG 6, especially with regards to monitoring and supervising the progress of the sustainable development goals via indicators and communicating with stakeholders. The urban-rural disparity in access to water and sanitation is an area of significant concern for the country. The sudden influx of almost a million Rohingya refugees in the Teknaf area put enormous pressure on drinking water and sanitation facilities. Tube wells dried up and latrines overflowed which created an unhygienic situation for the refugees. There were also difficulties ensuring proper allocation and efficient use of funds according to the plan of action. Lastly, the country noted struggling to provide appropriate technology at affordable prices for people living in hard to reach areas. Bangladesh emphasized climate change to be one of the key constraints in serving the poorest and marginalized people.
In order to advance sustainable development initiatives within SDG 6, Bangladesh reported having multiple programs in place, including: the Industrial Water Use Policy created in 2019, for sustainable management of water quality and protection of the water ecosystem; the Alternate Wetting and Drying (AWD) Method of Irrigation, to save 15-30% irrigation water without reduction in yield; two lighthouse initiatives as part of High-level Panel on Water (HLPW): Excavation and Re-excavation of Ponds for ensuring Safe Drinking Water and helping to keep local weather cool and the Development of WASH blocks at schools; the Bangladesh Valuing Water Initiative; and the Bangladesh Water Multi-Stakeholder Partnership (BWMSP).
Bangladesh has further acknowledged the need to move away from sectoral development and resources, towards working together with target SDG 11.5 on water-related disasters, in order to address sector fragmentation and enable coherent and sustainable management of water resources.
*The information reflected on this page has been taken directly from the official VNR received from this Member State. The information does not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the United Nations.