Land Reclamation a term applied broadly to cover not only the winning back, the recovering, of land that has been spoilt for agricultural use, but also the improvement of land so that it can be made useful, or useful for economic (including agricultural) or social purposes. Some of the types of land and the techniques employed are: land under water or waterlogged (by drainage or by the filling-in of a water-filled depression); arid land (by irrigation and if saline, by chemical treatment); unstable slopes and loose soil (by planting of vegetation); land subject to water erosion (by planting of vegetation, by terracing, by embankment); land impregnated with salt or industrial effluent (by chemical treatment); land covered with undesirable trees and/or scrub (by clearance). In Bangladesh, land reclamation from the water erosion and from the Bay of Bengal in coastal areas are the prior types. The main two land reclamation projects of the country are Meghna Cross-Dam I and II.
The Irrigation Department constructed Meghna Cross-Dam I in 1957 across a major branch of the meghna River flowing between the mainland of noakhali and the island of ramgati. It was an earthen cross-dam, having a length of 13.68 km. As a result, the flow of the Meghna was diverted to the west and 207 sq km of land was reclaimed up to 1965. bangladesh water development board constructed Meghna Cross-Dam II in 1963-64 connecting Char Jabbar with the mainland of Noakhali. As a result about 303 sq km of land was reclaimed from the Bay of Bengal up to 1965, 563 sq km up to 1974 and 717 sq km up to 1985. As a result of the construction of these cross-dams, it is estimated that about 1,001 sq km of land has been reclaimed from the sea up to 1995. [Masud Hasan Chowdhury]
See also meghna river.