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Workshop: “Red River, Mekong Delta, Venice Lagoon: comparing management tools”

The Italian Agency for Development Cooperation (AICS) – Hanoi Project Office, in partnership with the Embassy of Italy in Hanoi, will participate in the fifth edition of the Sustainable Development Festival of Italy through an online webinar that will take place on October 13th.

Embedded in Italy’s efforts to achieve its 2030 Agenda commitments, the conference “Red River, Mekong Delta, Venice Lagoon: comparing management tools” brings together a group of Italian and Vietnamese experts in a dialogue on the impacts of climate change, including sea-level rise, on natural habitat and urban environments, presenting future scenarios and possible solutions for Italy and Viet Nam.

Water is a vital resource for sustaining the ecosystems, their biodiversity and services supporting the livelihoods of approximately 18 million inhabitants in the Vietnamese Mekong River Delta, one of the largest river deltas in the world. The Red River Delta – the second broader river basin in Viet Nam – extends for almost 120 km² and produces nearly a third of Viet Nam’s rice. Currently, water resources are extremely vulnerable as a consequence of reduced free flowing rivers from the building of upstream dams, climate change effects such as sea-level rise, droughts, salinity intrusion and some manmade impacts such as wastewater release and unregulated agriculture practices.

Cần Thơ University Climate Change Research Institute has predicted that, at current rate, many provinces in the Mekong Delta may be flooded by 2030, while many others will suffer from drought brought on by seasonal decrease in rainfall. Massive changes in land and water resources are expected in the next two decades in Viet Nam. This has the potential to greatly contribute to development, but also to environmental degradation and further marginalization of vulnerable groups and their livelihoods.

The initiative “Development of a monitoring and decision support platform for the management of the Thai Binh – Red River water basin” implemented by AICS, supports the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment in improving the management of this river basin – where more than 26 million people live and where the impacts of climate change and the effects of the population growth are becoming more visible and are generating pressure on the different uses of water.

The experience of Venice and its Electromechanical Experimental Module (MoSE) built to protect the city and the lagoon from the phenomenon of high water, will lead the participants to explore the features of similar technologies, in particular in urban areas like the ones thriving along the Mekong and Red River Deltas – affected by similar threats.

The workshop will be the occasion to share experiences and potential solutions while opening the floor to discussion on mitigation and adaptation strategies to curb water-related risks for safe, prosperous, and sustainable countries.

Click here for the program of the workshop.