Vietnamese and foreign specialists working to prevent climate change and land subsidence held a workshop in Can Tho city on March 11 to discuss environmental problems in the Mekong Delta region.

Speaking at the event - which was organised by the Netherlands’ Utrecht University and Can Tho University - Professor Le Van Tri, Director of the Institute of Climate Change Research in the Mekong Delta, noted that the region is faced with risks of land sinking , salt intrusion and declining groundwater sources.

He added that land erosion causes the collapse of vital infrastructure and drastically increases the risk of flooding. Other serious problems include decreased agricultural production, saltwater intrusion of surface water and changing flows in river systems.

Professor Tom Kompier from Utrecht University explained that experts from his department and their counterparts in Can Tho University have cooperated together in conducting research to analyse the geology in the Mekong Delta. They have produced specific measures to limit further land subsidence in the region.

The team has developed a model of the delta’s subsurface land layers to forecast the future rate of subsidence. This will be used to better plan the construction of transport routes, flood-control dykes and rainwater storage areas.

Kompier also stressed the need to raise public awareness about the links between groundwater exploitation and land sinking, drought and bad harvests.-VNA