The southern province of Kien Giang, which has around 200km of coastline, is facing serious erosion, which has threatened the lives of hundreds of local households.

The erosion is particularly serious in An Bien and An Minh districts, where 25km of the total 75km of coastline have been eroded.

As a consequence, 12 local households have lost their entire contracted forest areas to the sea, while hundreds of others have lost some land.

The head of Phat Dat Village in An Minh District Tran Van Suong said local residents have signed contracts to take care of forests on 300ha, but more than 200 ha have been eroded away, and the remaining 100ha are also under threat of being washed away.

According to Suong, the distance from protective forests to sea has reduced from over 1km 10 years ago to around 300-500m at present.

The southern province has a 212-km sea dyke system stretching from Mui Nai (Ha Tien town) to Tieu Dua (An Minh district).

It owns around 8,700 hectares of land dedicated to coastal protective forests. However, only 2,950 hectares are currently covered in trees.

Erosion occurs most seriously in September and October, directly affect the livelihoods of locals.

According to the provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, Kien Giang will require about 5.34 trillion VND (245.6 million USD) for afforestation, and build a drainage system and upgrade sea dykes in order to prevent erosion and respond to climate change and sea level rising during 2015-2020 and beyond 2020.

A number of investment projects, including upgrades to the 71km Xeo Ro-Tieu Dua sea dyke and the construction of 21 out of the 27 drainage works along the sea dyke system are awaiting funding.-VNA