A number of measures to cope with salinity intrusions in the 2015-2016 dry season in the southern region were presented at a conference recently held in the Mekong Delta province of Ben Tre.
According to Le Manh Hung, Deputy General Director of the Irrigation General Department, the southern provinces should switch to suitable crop and animal varieties, actively dredge canals and build temporary water reservoirs to ensure water supply for production and daily use.
Agencies under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) were asked to make timely and accurate forecast for weather, salinity intrusion and the water flows on Mekong River in order to help farmers arrange their timetable for cultivation.
The provincial authorities also need to raise people’s awareness of water resource use and protection.
The Irrigation General Department supported requests for additional investments in desalination and water supply projects in Ben Tre, Tien Giang, Long An, and Hau Giang provinces in anticipation of water shortage in the next 5-10 years.
According to the Southern Region Meteorological and Hydrological Station and the Southern Irrigation Science Institute, the rainy season in the South will last until the end of this month, and salty intrusion will begin in December.
The salinity causing by droughts in the dry season this year will be severe as the total rainfall in the region is forecast to be 20-50% lower than annual average level.
The water levels on Mekong River have also stayed below the average since May.