GMS sustainable development workshop held in Washington DC
VietNamNet Bridge – More than 80 government, business, non-profit, education and other officials gathered at the Vietnam Embassy in Washington DC recently for a sustainable development conference regarding the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS).
GMS, sustainable development, saltwater intrusion

Changing weather patterns and rising seas have already begun to affect the daily lives of many people in the GMS and climate change threatens the livelihoods of millions more, speakers at the conference said.

Intense floods and droughts, coastal erosion, higher seas and heat waves in coming decades threaten rice, fruit and coffee crops and fisheries on which their subsistence depends.

The basin runs from the Tibetan plateau in China, to Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam, where the Mekong empties into the East China Sea.

The delta produces about half Vietnam's rice crop and 60% of its shrimp harvest. But rising seas and salt water intrusion threaten harvests and would likely displace farmers.

While rainy seasons may contract over parts of the region, overall rainfall is expected to rise. This means more intense rain events when they occur, speakers said.

Large human populations living in low-lying coastal areas and floodplains make the region highly vulnerable to floods, saltwater intrusion, and rising sea levels they added, referring to HCM City, Bangkok and Hanoi.

At the conference delegates tried to agree on steps to expand a global effort to fight climate change and agreed that helping poorer nations adapt to the impact of climate change is a key part of the puzzle.

Delegates from US agencies like the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the US Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) and the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) shared information and experiences in mobilising finance for these projects.

At the end of the conference, Vietnam Ambassador to the US Pham Quang Vinh thanked those in attendance for their participation saying it was a promising start towards finding a solution for sustainable development of the GMS.

Source: VOV

GMS, sustainable development, saltwater intrusion