Rampal Power Plant and Shrimp Farming in the Sundarbans – by Allison Joyce


A woman carries firewood from the Sundarbans mangrove forest across the river to her home in Bodomari village in Khulna Division, Bangladesh

Photographer Allison Joyce shares photos of the Sundarbans area of Bangladesh.

In February I spent a few weeks working in my favorite part of Bangladesh, the Sundarbans, on a story about the Rampal power plant and labor exploitation in the shrimp industry.

See more photos on Allison’s blog.


A man pulls a boat towards the Sundarbans mangrove forest from Joymuni village February, 2014 in Khulna Division, Bangladesh. The Rampal Power plant, a 1,320-MW coal-fired power plant, is being constructed 14 kilometers away from the worlds largest mangrove forest, the Sundarbans. The government is insistent that the project is needed to supply power to the country and that the plant is safe for the environment, but activists say that it will destroy the forest. About 50 to 60 thousand people depend on the Sundarbans, collecting crabs, fish, firewood and honey to earn a living.


Shrimp and other fish are sold in a market in Shyamnagar February, 2014 in the Satkhira District, Bangladesh. A recent report by the Environmental Justice Foundation titled ‘Impossibly cheap: abuse and injustice in Bangladesh’s shrimp industry’ uncovered labor exploitation practices, excessively low wages and numerous other violations in Bangladesh’s shrimp industry. An estimated 1.2 million people are employed in the industry, which is the second largest foreign currency earner after the garment industry.



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