U.S.-Vietnam Project to Address Climate Change in Vietnam’s Forests and Deltas

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) officially launched the Vietnam Forests and Deltas climate change project in Nam Dinh province on January 16.  The estimated $26 million project supports Vietnam’s goals for climate-resilient, low emission, sustainable development by improving land-use planning, forest and natural resource management and engaging communities in development of action plans to address climate change impacts.

“Vietnam is a priority under President Obama’s climate change initiatives,” said Joakim Parker, USAID Vietnam Mission Director.  “This project supports the U.S.-Vietnam Comprehensive Partnership by making a major investment in the Red River Delta region to help Vietnamese communities reverse environmental degradation and adapt to climate change.”

The project aims to make tangible contributions in moving policies and action plans on climate change and green growth into practice in the four participating provinces of Vietnam: Nam Dinh, Thanh Hoa, Nghe An and Long An.  The project will also support national-level coordination on related climate change policy and implementation in Vietnam.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry recently highlighted the project during his visit to the Mekong Delta, calling for increased cooperation to maintain the Mekong as a source of livelihood and sustenance for nearly 70 million people in the region.

The project will raise awareness and build capacity for government and communities and enable them to better understand climate threats, assess their vulnerability and plan for the impacts of climate change, and develop climate-resilient livelihood options.  The project will also support restoration of natural ecosystems that will sustain human life and economic activity.

The launch event included representatives from MARD, related ministries and the provincial leaders of Nam Dinh, Thanh Hoa, Nghe An and Long An.  Participants visited three sites in Quat Lam, a climate change-impacted and disaster prone area in Nam Dinh province, Participants saw the communities and activities which will be supported by the project, including a storm-damaged coastal defense dyke protecting a tourism area, mangrove forest planting activities, and coastal livelihood production areas developed in response to increased salinity levels in the water and repeated flooding of Quat Lam.

Working with local governments and communities, the Vietnam Forests and Deltas project will be executed by MARD in collaboration with Winrock International and a consortium of other NGO partners, including the Netherlands Development Organization, American Red Cross, Vietnam Red Cross, and Center for Sustainable Rural Development.

Click here for the photos of the event.