By Nam Pham
HA NOI – The Meteorology Office/Hadley Centre, the UK's foremost climate change research facility, yesterday warned Viet Nam of a four degrees Celsius temperature rise at a climate change conference held by British Council in the capital.
The warning came in accordance with the centre's new "4 Degree Map" launched at the conference, which shows the potential impact of global warming in South East Asia and Viet Nam.
"Negative impacts may occur in Viet Nam and other South East Asian countries due to rising global warming," according to Chris Gordon, head of the Science Partnership at the UK Meteorology Office/Hadley Centre.
He added that if Viet Nam took no action, there would be a four degrees Celsius temperature increase, causing a 65 cm rise in the sea-level and the shrinking of many coastal regions, especially in the low-lying Mekong Delta.
"Around half of the delta will be shrunk", Gordon said.
Such a sea-level rise would totally submerge the lowest parts of the delta with up to 13 per cent (5,100 sq meter) of land mass disappearing, doing significant damage to the annual 4.7 tonnes rice economy.
Gordon added that the ecology of the region, in terms of forests, crops, water availability, marine life, drought, permafrost, tropical cyclones, extreme temperatures, and health, displayed on the map via nine different colours, would also be affected.
Speaking at the event, Antony Stokes, British Ambassador to Viet Nam, emphasised the close co-operation between the UK and the country in handling the current global warming crisis.
According to the co-operative agreement signed earlier, the UK will help the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment train Vietnamese environmental officials.
Many guests attended the event including Associate Professor Dr Tran Thuc, director of the Institute of Meteorology, Hydrology and Environment and Dr Nguyen Van Tai, director of the Institute of Strategy, Policy on Natural Resources and Environment, amongst others. -- VNS