BEN TRE (VNS) — Soil erosion threatens the livelihood of more than 50 households in southern Ben Tre Province's Bao Thuan Ward. The erosion also threatens crucial infrastructure in Thanh Hai Commune such as roads and bridges.
Strong waves and rising seawater levels caused erosion to speed up in recent years, according to Lam Van O, deputy chairman of Bao Thuan Ward People's Committee. Local authorities hired contractors to reinforce the weak parts of the shore with metal nets and stones to protect major infrastructure, but due to budget limitations, affected households had to spend their own money to protect their land.
|Another 100ha of protective forest in the vicinity are threatened by stronger tidal waves. — Photos Van Tri
"I've lived here for 21 years but I've never seen the water this high before," said Nguyen Thi Phuong, who had to borrow nearly VND50 million (US$2,400) to reinforce the foundation of her house.
Huynh Van Luong, who used to cultivate 0.6ha of agricultural land, said he lost one-third of his land due to erosion since October last year. Another 100ha of protective forest in the vicinity are threatened by stronger tidal waves. Chairman of the Thanh Hai Commune People's Committee Phan Thanh Tung said erosion also hampered agricultural production in the region.
The commune requested a solution from the provincial People's Committee, ministries and agencies but no one addressed the issue, he said. — VNS