The Sundarban

  • Kalyan Rudra
Part of the Geography of the Physical Environment book series (GEOPHY)


The littoral tract of GBM delta is a unique area with thirteen major estuaries and many interlacing channels with intervening islands. This had been an area of dense mangrove forest which was partially reclaimed to facilitate agriculture and human habitation since the late eighteenth century. But the coastal Bengal had been the seat of an ancient civilization in the period 300 BC–1200 AD, but declined possibly due to gradual inundation. The tidal creeks were embanked to prevent ingress of saline water into the floodplain. The long-term effect of such premature reclamation was detrimental as sediment dispersal during high tide was impaired and the channels were choked. The coastline of the GBM delta has been changing fast; while the sea encroaching inland along Indian coast, the shape of the Meghna estuary in Bangladesh has changed due to accretion.


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Environment DepartmentWest Bengal Pollution Control BoardKolkataIndia

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