Project profile — Environmental Rehabilitation and Improving Livelihoods in Cox's Bazar


UNDP - United Nations Development Programme (41114)
2019-02-01 - 2022-06-30
Global Affairs Canada
OGM Indo-Pacific

Country / region 

• Bangladesh (100.00%)


• Secondary Education: Vocational training (11330) (44.00%)
• Energy Generation, Renewable Resources: Energy conservation and demand-side efficiency (23183) (26.00%)
• Agricultural development:
Agricultural development (31120) (1.00%)
Agricultural education/training (31181) (5.00%)
• Forestry: Forestry development (31220) (23.00%)
• Fishing: Fishery education/training (31381) (1.00%)

Policy marker 

• Gender equality (significant objective)
• Environmental sustainability (cross-cutting) (principal objective)
• Participatory development and good governance (not targeted)
• Trade development (not targeted)
• Biodiversity (not targeted)
• Climate change mitigation (significant objective)
• Climate Change Adaptation (principal objective)
• Urban issues (not targeted)
• Desertification (not targeted)
• Children's issues (not targeted)
• Youth Issues (not targeted)
• Disaster Risk Reduction(DRR) (not targeted)
• Indigenous Issues (not targeted)
• Disability (not targeted)
• Nutrition (not targeted)
• ICT as a tool for development (not targeted)


The project aims to secure a safe and healthy environment for the affected host community population in Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh. It aims to do so by: (1) addressing their urgent cooking fuel needs; (2) improving their economic livelihoods and food security; and (3) rehabilitating the natural resource base while preventing further environmental degradation in the region. Being one of the world’s largest refugee camps, Cox’s Bazar has hosted an unprecedented number of Rohingya since August 2017. This is putting immense pressure on scarce natural resources in the area, resulting in degraded natural forests, barren hills and an emerging water crisis. This situation calls for responses in order to help restore the environment and ecosystem, as well as measures to prevent further degradation and to support early restoration. The project objectives include supplying alternative clean cooking fuel and technology to women-headed households; providing livelihood and income generation support, particularly to vulnerable women and girls; and fostering environmental practices to reduce pollution and encourage sustainable natural resource management. Project activities include: (1) distributing liquid petroleum gas (LPG) stove kits, including burners, hoses, regulator and gas cylinders; providing monthly refills of LPG; training on safe usage, best practices in cooking methods and fire safety; raising awareness on community fire safety and prevention through distributing outreach material (for example, radio communication, leaflets, posters); and providing fire service and civil defence training on safe usage and management of the LPG cook-stoves; (2) providing training and start-up support for fostering livelihoods and income-generation; establishing gender-inclusive, climate-sensitive farmer field schools for improving food production and post-harvest storage of high demand and high nutrition crops; promoting the adoption of climate-sensitive farming and fishing technologies and practices; and (3) implementing cash-for-work programs for land stabilization through erosion control, reforestation and maintenance work; establishing agro-forestry and collaborative forest management systems; and implementing cash-for work programs for planting of fast-growing wood fuel plants/tree nurseries and seedling production. This project is a component of the US$118 million multi-donor “UN-Joint-Project To Address Cooking Fuel Needs, Environmental Degradation and Food Security for Populations Affected By The Refugee Crisis” implemented by the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the World Food Programme (WFP) and the Food and Agricultural Organization(FAO) and administered by the UNDP.

Expected results 

The expected outcomes for this project include: (1) increased provision of alternative, clean cooking fuel and technology to host community households, particularly those headed by women; (2) increased empowerment and livelihood opportunities for the most vulnerable, especially women and girls, in host communities; and (3) enhanced natural resource base and reduced environmental impact of the refugee influx.

Results achieved 

Results achieved by the United Nations Development Programme and implementing partners supported by Canada and other international donors through the Multi-donor Trust Fund, as of December 2021 include: (1) distributed 1,056,299 liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) cylinders, including refills to 29,629 host community and 96,641 Rohingya households as alternative cooking fuel to help reduce community reliance on firewood, thus protecting surrounding forest resources; (2) 98% of targeted households reported increased use of LPG; (3) according to the mid-term evaluation, 97% of host community beneficiaries reported reduction in firewood expenditure; (4) stabilized and restored 2,000 hectares (4,942 acres) of degraded plantation areas and forestland representing 100% of the program target; (5) stabilized 292 hectares (721 acres) of vulnerable landscape in Rohingya refugee camps through tree planting, which has helped reduce disaster risks and mitigate the negative environmental impacts of forest and land degradation; (6) 10,417 vulnerable women received vocational and life-skills training, along with a monthly allowance of Bangladeshi Taka (BDT) 1,050 (about Can$14.00) to enable them to complete learning; (7) 413 women and 87 men received training and technical support under the climate adaptive agriculture component, including in areas such as innovative agricultural techniques for the production of saline-resistant crops and entrepreneurial skills. Upon completion of training and submission of their business plans, the participants received a cash grant/business capital of BDT 15,000 (about Can$203) each, enabling them to start their businesses; (8) 22,504 (21,114 women; 1,390 men) entrepreneurs, farmers and smallholders received financial and business development assistance, including training in livelihood activities and effective use of start-up support; (9) supported 1,440 (506 women; 934 men) agriculturalists in adopting climate-sensitive agricultural practices and high-demand and high-nutrient and high-value crop production, marketing, and management. They also received training on community-supported agriculture, post-harvest processing and value addition; (10) enabled 2,880 (1,012 women; 1,868 me)] agriculturalists to benefit from climate-sensitive agricultural practices, production of high-demand nutrient crops, marketing, and management; (11) 7,000 Rohingya refugees received skills-building training in a variety of areas, including kitchen gardening, tailoring, basket weaving, and upcycling; (12) 6,352 beneficiaries received technical and vocational training in high-demand skills areas, including computing, plumbing, and machine repair. The majority of the trainees secured meaningful employment upon graduation; (13) Provided training to 22,249 (21,070 women; 1,179 men]) in livelihood activities and business start-up support; (14) 1,440 (506 women; 934 men) farmers received hybrid vegetable seeds. Among these, 720 received agro-mechanization support services to improve production; and (15) a medium-term impact of the above support led to increased average household income from BDT 5,051 (Can$71.00), in early 2021, to between BDT 6,896 (Can$97.00) and BDT13,860 (Can$195) by mid-2021 among targeted beneficiaries.

Budget and spending 

Original budget $0
Planned disbursement $0
Country percentages by sector
Type of finance Aid grant excluding debt reorganisation
Collaboration type Bilateral
Type of aid Contributions to specific-purpose programmes and funds managed by implementing partners
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