Illustrative photo. (Source: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – A number of coastal provinces in the Mekong Delta which are located about 25-40 km from the sea are expected to welcome inflows of fresh water in April when the tide recedes, according to the Southern Irrigation Science Institute.

The institute suggested the localities make the best of the water resources, especially by opening culverts to make it easier for the water to flow in. However, it said, such water resources should be tested for salinity first.

In several districts of Long An province and the Mekong River estuary, the fresh water is forecast to reach its peak between April 12-25 when the salinity decreases, the institute said, warning that salinisation may re-develop complicatedly after the period and reach high levels again in May.

The Southern Regional Hydro-meteorological Centre forecasts that this year’s rainy season will arrive later than in previous years, scheduled for the end of May in most southern localities, and total rainfall will be equivalent to the yearly average.

The National Centre for Hydro-meteorological Forecasting said the stormy season is expected to last from June to December this year with about 10-12 storms, of which 6-7 storms will directly affect Vietnam.

The last two storms will exert direct impacts on the southern and south-central regions, it predicted.

Average temperatures during the rainy season will measure about 0.25-0.5 degrees Celsius higher than the previous years.

The southern region is forecast to experience floods in mid-October and saltwater intrusion is expected to reduce in early May, the centre said.

Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Cao Duc Phat said about 160,000ha of rice have been ruined due to drought and saltwater intrusion in the Mekong Delta, which means some 1.5 million people have not earned money from rice over the last number of months.

Also, more than 200,000 families – about 1 million people, have not had enough water for daily needs, he added.-VNA