III. INTEGRATION OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONCERNS INTO DECISION- MAKING FOR FLOOD LOSS REDUCTION
E. Guidelines for community participation
4. Participation in macro-level planning
The concept of participatory planning has recently received due recognition in macro-level planning in Bangladesh. While conducting FAP studies (FPCO, 1995b), extensive public consultation has been carried out in pilot projects and regional studies to ensure maximum people's participation from the very inception of the projects.
FAP evaluations (FPCO, 1995b) and the document on Bangladesh Water and Flood Management Strategy (FPCO, 1995a) suggest that to ensure sustainable flood management, drainage and water development planning, it is imperative to articulate the needs and problems of the diverse socio-economic groups of people affected by recurrent flooding. Through people's participation, the most notable gain is a commitment to generate socio-economic development relevant to their needs.
Moreover, while preparing the National Environment Management Action Plan (NEMAP) (MOEF, 1995), extensive public consultation was carried out so as to represent all shades of public opinion and to ensure participation of people. Through such consultations, the people's concerns with regard to environmental issues emerged indicating the need for a practicable action plan. Policies and action plans as part of people's solutions to water and FCDI projects have duly been incorporated in NEMAP along with other sectoral concerns which merit attention in macro-level planning. NEMAP thus demonstrates the institutionalization of people's participation in the planning process.