Plastic-free Balu River Campaign Phase-II
The School of Environmental Science and Management (SESM), Independent University, Bangladesh (IUB), along with its River Conservation Club (RCC), and the University wing of Riverine People, organized a day-long field trip to conduct various activities on the Balu River conservation (Purbachal segment) on November 23, 2019.
200 students from 4 different environmental courses participated in the event, with the presence of Dr. Md. Abdul Khaleque, Dean, SESM, IUB, and Chowdhury Kamrul Hasan, Senior Lecturer, Department of Environmental Science (DES), SESM, IUB who is also the coordinator of RCC-IUB. Mohammad Azaz, river-researcher and Director, Riverine People remained present. The Chief Guest of the program was A K M Arif Uddin, Joint Director, Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA). Syeda Ferdousi Alam Neela, Vice-Chairman, Rupganj Upazila, was present as the Special Guest. Two distinguished researchers from the University of Oxford, Rebecca Peters and Merlin Harries also attended the program. Channel 24, Channel-i and Nodi TV were the media partners of the event. Tanzila Ahmed, President, RCC-IUB, hosted the event and provided a brief overview of RCC-IUB as well as the first phase of Balu River conservation project.
During the daylong program, activities included tree plantation, questionnaire survey, interviews, trash cleaning collection of water sample and in situ measurement of water quality parameters, and distribution of bins among local communities. Water samples from different points of the Balu River were also collected and different water quality parameters (e.g. dissolved oxygen (DO) and pH) were investigated in situ. In the end, the guests and the members of RCC-IUB along with Riverine People handed over waste disposal bins to the makeshift shopkeepers and owners.