El Niño causing unusual dry spell across Vietnam’s Mekong Delta

Thanh Nien News
10 October 2015

The Mekong Delta, Vietnam’s rice basket, is facing a historic dry period as intense El Nino conditions have changed rainfall patterns, an expert said.  The delta usually saw very high rainfall during every monsoon season. But this year that is not the case, with water levels in many places dropping to record lows.
Dang Van Dung, deputy director of the Southern Hydro-meteorology Forecast Center, told Tuoi Tre in an interview published Friday that due to the strong El Nino, there’s little rain both upstream and downstream of the Mekong. The water level recorded in the delta’s An Giang Province has hit the lowest in history, Dung said, adding that even the strong El Nino years of 1997 and 1998 were less dry.
The current El Nino, which is expected to last into next year, has been considered as one of the most intense in at least two decades. Dung said this year’s monsoon will end in early November, so there’s very little hope for better weather conditions.