The Mekong Delta province of Dong Thap has earmarked over a trillion of VND on the construction and upgrade of structures designed to prevent erosion along Tien and Hau riverbanks. (Photo: VNA)

Dong Thap (VNA) – The Mekong Delta province of Dong Thap has earmarked over a trillion of VND on the construction and upgrade of structures designed to prevent erosion along Tien and Hau riverbanks, helping minimise losses caused by natural disasters.

According to Vice Director of the provincial Department of Natural Resources and Environment Huynh Van Nguyen, the province has prioritised capital for several key projects in response to climate change, including 175 billion VND (7.5 million USD) for the upgrade of embankments in Chau Thanh district’s An Hiep commune during 2017-2020, over 800 billion VND for the same work of embankments and construction of a drainage system along Tien river in Cao Lanh city during 2016-2020, and 271 billion VND sourced from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for a project to prevent erosion along Tien river in Hong Ngu district’s Thuong Thoi Tien township, among others.

The province has ordered communes, wards and townships to prepare response measures for erosion-prone areas, he said, adding competent agencies have kept a close watch on and keep local residents updated with erosion situation in the localities, while resettling people from the dangerous sites.

Besides, Dong Thap will continue planning, develop more resettlement houses to relocate people, and accelerate the construction of embankment works.

Along with enhancing inspections against sand exploitation activities, especially in areas hard hit by erosion, the province has paid due attention to the dredging of irrigational works, canals and rivers to change the water flow so as to reduce erosion.

Local authorities have reported the number of severe erosion incidents has increased rapidly in recent time. Dong Thap province loses average 30-50 hectares of land to erosion.

The province experienced 49 erosion cases along its rivers, with a combined length of 28.5 kilometres, according to Vice Director of the provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Vo Thanh Ngoan. He said 17 hectares of land were swept away, resulting in a financial loss of over 40 billion VND.

It mobilised and supported 343 households in erosion-prone areas to move to safer places. More than 6,000 households in the province are still living in danger zones, and need to be relocated soon.

Currently, there are 85 active erosion sites along the Tien and Hau rivers.-VNA