High tides over the past few days submerged the entire 252km long coastline of the southernmost province of Ca Mau, with some areas under 0.5m of water.

According to Le Van Su, director of the provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, high tides came early this year, and at a higher level than normal, which is a clear sign of climate change and rising sea water level. The tides in the province usually peak in the period from December to early March the following year.

Some areas 50km deep inside the mainland are also affected by the tides, including Nam Can town in Nam Can district.

More than 2,000 ha of aquaculture farms and 1,000 ha of food crops and orchards have been damaged by the intrusion of salt water.

Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Le Dung said the Prime Minister has approved five programmes aimed at adapting to climate change and coping with rising sea water level in Ca Mau. The programmes will need a total of 5 trillion VND (238 million USD) to implement.

According to the official, the province will give priority to the programme on building a sea dyke along its eastern coastline and upgrade the western dyke system at an investment of 1.3 trillion VND (61.9 million USD).

The western sea dyke system of Ca Mau has been affected by serious landslides caused by heavy rains and strong winds. The 120km-long system stretches through Phu Tan, U Minh and Tran Van Thoi districts in Ca Mau province to Kien Giang province. It plays a significant role in transportation, saltwater intrusion prevention and national security.-VNA