06/10/2019 12:48 GMT+7 Email Print Like 0

Low, late floods worsen saline intrusion in Mekong Delta: experts

Low and late floods have further worsened saline intrusion in the Mekong Delta region, heard a workshop held in the Mekong Delta province of An Giang on October 4.

The event was co-organised by the Ho Chi Minh City-based Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper and the Vietnam Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (Agribank).

Spanning an area of about 4 million ha, the Mekong Delta yields 50 percent of food, 65 percent of fruits and 75 percent of aquatic products of the whole country, making up 20 percent of Vietnam’s gross domestic product. Floodwater usually is a large source of aquatic creatures, along with alluvium for the delta.

Le Anh Tuan, an expert of the Research Institute for Climate Change at Can Tho University, said low and late floods in the Mekong Delta will trigger severe saline intrusion, causing a huge impact on local people’s agricultural production and livelihoods.

Meanwhile, Nguyen Huu Thien, another expert on the delta's ecosystem, pointed out that hydropower plants in upper reaches of Mekong River have caused negative impact on the region’s weather conditions.

By 2020, the amount of alluvium and sand to the Delta is projected to plunge, thereby resulting in severe coastal erosion, he added.

Experts also warned that urban flooding in the Mekong Delta will be yearly, with the next one fiercer than the previous.

Mekong Delta localities are advised to closely respect the natural course of the river and select appropriate, eco-friendly and sustainable models to adapt, as well as devise scenarios and measures to cope with the negative developments.

They are also asked to reduce rice crops in a bid to minimise the over-exploitation of groundwater.
VNA/VNP