Impacts of Shrimp Farming on the Socioeconomic and Environmental Conditions in the Coastal Regions of Bangladesh
M. Serajul Islam,
A.H.M. Mustafa Kamal
The study was carried out to analyze the comparative economic returns of alternate shrimp-crop farming and to assess the socioeconomic and environmental impacts of shrimp farming in coastal areas of Bangladesh. Shrimp farmers as well as other groups of people such as land lessors, shrimp farm labourers and shrimp seed collectors directly benefited and affected were randomly selected for the study. Accordingly, an appropriate number of all these sample households were selected from four different areas of greater Khulna and Cox`s Bazar regions. In shrimp growing areas, four different farming practices such as alternate shrimp-rice farming, shrimp-salt farming, year round shrimp farming and year round rice farming were studied. In alternate shrimp-crop farming, shrimp was the main crop, and the rice and salt were secondary crops. It was found that under alternate shrimp-salt farming per hectare production of shrimp was higher compared to the production of shrimp under alternate shrimp-rice farming. Of the different farming practices, the highest gross (Tk. 247,165
ha-1) and net (Tk.155,048 ha-1) income was recorded in alternate shrimp-salt practice, which was successively followed by the year round shrimp farming (Tk. 125,005 ha-1 and Tk. 77,226 ha-1), alternate shrimp-rice farming (Tk. 107,235
ha-1 and Tk. 62,300 ha-1) and year round rice farming (Tk. 44,760
ha-1 and Tk. 29,698 ha-1). But per hectare production of shrimp obtained from year round shrimp farming was relatively higher (275 kg) than those of shrimp-salt (245 kg) and shrimp rice farming (207 kg). It was clearly implied that farm income from year round rice farming within the vicinity of shrimp growing areas was the lowest among the four different farming practices. The results obtained indicated that shrimp farmers and other related people accrued socioeconomic benefits from shrimp culture. By providing income generation, employment opportunities and escalating many activities, coastal communities including women had chances to improve their socioeconomic condition through their direct and indirect involvement in coastal farming. The study revealed that undesigned and unplanned shrimp farming has affected the production of cereal crops and vegetables, trees, poultry and livestock in the coastal region of Bangladesh. Shrimp farming has also negative effects on biodiversity, productivity of estuarine waters, agro-ecosystem, socioeconomic conditions and friendly environment. Appropriate measures should be taken urgently to improve the natural and social environment of the coastal regions of Bangladesh.
Cited References Fulltext