Mekong Delta protective forests wiped away by rising waters

Vietnam Net Bridge

Thousands of households along the coast in Ca Mau province have been living in fear as hundreds of meters of protective forests have been lost to the sea each year.

Nguyen Cong Tuan of Dat Mui commune recently drove reporters to the Vam Xoay seaport, about two kilometers away from the central area of the commune.

“The sea here is compared with an ‘evil genius’. Strong big waves can sweep away houses and properties and threaten our lives any time,” he said, pointing to the seaport, where big waves were hitting the shore and roaring.

The vast forests which served as shields to protect Dat Mui residents and their houses no longer exist. Mac Van Thanh, who has spent half of his life on Dat Mui land, complained that he and the locals are afraid that landslides can occur.

Nguyen Van Quoc, a local official, said well-off people now buy land in safe places and build solid houses, while poor people have to stay in rivers basins.  They live on fishing and have to relocate their houses several times a year to avoid landslides.

According to UNDP, Vietnam is one of five countries in the world to suffer most from  climate change. Vietnam’s Mekong Delta in general and Ca Mau province in particular is facing big challenges brought about climate change, threatening the development of the region.

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