Mui Ne beaches face serious erosion

Mui Ne is losing its beautiful beaches to serious erosion which is damaging seaside resorts while local authorities have yet to find a solution.

The beach resort town in the southern province of Binh Thuan is now deserted as many tourists have decided to leave or not to come after seeing the situation. 

According to several resorts in the area, over one kilometre of beaches in Ham Tien Ward have eroded up to 100 metres. Some resorts have had to spend lots of money to fix the problems. 

Manager of a resort in the area, Tran Van Minh, said his resort had spent VND400 million (USD17,629) to build an embankment to cope with the erosion but with little result.

"Waves have eaten nearly 100 metres of the beach at our resort," Minh said." We have lost 10 coconut trees, a beach-side spa facility and our restaurant is now being threatened. We have called for support from local authorities but have not received any response." 

Director of Aria Mui Ne Resort, Mai Van Son, also said they are losing not only assets but also reputation when receiving many complaints about the beach from guests during the last month.

“They posted negative comments on websites and this has affected our rankings," Son said. "Some foreign tourists even asked us to refund their bookings and leave right after arriving at our resort."

Nguyen Hong Ngoc, owner of Suoi Tien Mui Ne Resort, said that she had never seen such serious erosion here before.

"I've run this resort for 18 years but we had never faced this problem before," Ngoc said. "We've just lost the beautiful beach here in just a month. We've managed to create ways to the beach using sandbags but guests are still leaving us." 

Ngoc said that she has had to pay over VND100 million in compensation to guests who did not agree to stay at her facility in that situation.

"Erosion is destroying our swimming pool and bungalows," Ngoc said. "We're losing them soon."

Talking about the cause of the problems, head of Binh Thuan Provincial Irrigation Department, Vo Duc Anh, blamed the rampant construction of embankments by local resorts.

"The building of embankments to protect the beach should be carefully planned depending on the location," Anh said. "These kinds of embankments cannot protect the beaches but will destroy them."

The official also said that the embankment construction needed co-operation from different agencies including Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, Department of Natural Resources and Environment and Department of Construction.

Meanwhile, former head of the Vietnam Institute for Sea and Island Research, Vu Thanh Ca, said that the shortage of sand was the main cause of erosion.

"We need to supply sand to the beaches," Ca said. "But we need to carefully study the sand current in order to supply more sand to appropriate locations."

Ca also warned not to build anything on the beach without carefully studying tides and the beaches to prevent erosion.


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