Bangladesh is called a riverine country. There are 700 rivers listed in various documents, mostly published by the government agencies. But due to tremendous degradation in multiple ways including trans-boundary unilateral withdrawal of water, only 232 rivers are now identifiable in this delta. The economy, livelihoods, communication and culture of Bangladesh are very much influenced by the health of the rivers.
Sharif Jamil started his activism to protect the rivers and water bodies of Bangladesh since 2000. His involvement with Bangladesh Poribesh Andolon initially gave him a platform to organize social movements to protect the rivers and wetlands of Bangladesh. He has been actively involved with the Save Buriganga Movement, the pioneer civil society movement in Bangladesh to protect any river since its inception. He was one of the core organizers of the International Conference on Regional Cooperation on Transboundary Rivers in 2004, and National Convention on Rivers in 2006.