Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai has asked the southern provinces of Ca Mau and Kien Giang to take initiative in responding to climate change to protect sustainable economic development.

One of the major challenges facing southernmost Ca Mau, Kien Giang and other Mekong Delta localities is saltwater intrusion diluting and limiting the supply of fresh water for daily use and production, Hai said.

A report released by the provincial Department of Natural Resources and Environment revealed that close to 10,000 hectares of agricultural land in Ca Mau have been contaminated with sea water.

Hai requested the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and related ministries study the impact of disasters and climate change in order to design effective response plans.

Priority should be given to protecting mangrove forests, speeding up reforestation and upgrading irrigation and sea dyke systems, he suggested.

Climate change poses a complicated concern and affects numerous aspects of life, necessitating the participation of the entire community and the close cooperation between institutes and scientists to determine flexible solutions relevant to each locality and region, he stated.-VNA