Residents are building stilt houses to adapt to rising sea levels in Ngoc Hien district, the southern most Ca Mau province.
Chairman of the district People's Committee Nguyen Truong Giang said
the province is below sea level and its 254km coastline and 800km of
river and canals are the most threatened by climate change in the
"In the last five years, the sea level has risen
higher and higher in this district, and only the old style houses with
stilts are unaffected by the problem," Giang said.
house suited the conditions and also the tight economics in Ngoc Hien
district where the rate of poor households ranked as one of the highest
in the country, Giang said.
A stilt house cost 20-50
million VND (1,000-2,500 USD) and stands on 1-1.5m piles made from
mangrove timber. It helps people avoid the moisture of coastal salt
water, especially at high tide.
Tran Van Phung, in Dat
Mui Village, said such houses cost less because timber from mangrove
trees is cheap and the homes do not have much furniture, such as beds,
chairs and table.
The houses last about 10 years and can withstand 1m sea levels, said Phung.
In the last five years, Ngoc Hien has helped 1,200 poor households
build the houses. Most offices, companies and residential houses were
also built on stilts.
However, Giang warned that stilt
houses could only adapt to rises in sea level, not strong storms. The
district bans people from building their houses near the sea and
encourages those who have houses there to move to safer areas.
Along coastal rivers there are thousands of vulnerable households facing high tides regularly.
Along with stilt houses, Ngoc Hien district is asking for money to build sea dykes to mitigate further climate change.-VNA