|An erosion prevention embankment is being built along the Ba Rày River in Tiền Giang Province’s Cai Lậy District. — VNA/VNS Photo Minh Trí|
TIỀN GIANG — The Cửu Long (Mekong) Delta province of Tiền Giang has stepped up efforts to prevent erosion along rivers and canals, which is worsening and severely affecting people’s lives and agricultural production.
The erosion is worst in western districts like Cái Bè, Cai Lậy and Châu Thành because of natural factors and human activities like climate change, reducing sediment deposits in the Mekong River, weakened banks, and excessive sand mining.
In Cai Lậy, the hardest hit with most rivers and canals affected, there are 44 eroded sites with a combined length of 2,184 metres, according to its Bureau of Agriculture and Rural Development.
The Ba Rày River in its Cẩm Sơn Commune has 15 eroded sites, with two disrupting travel on district-level roads.
Local authorities are trying to repair the two eroded sites to facilitate travel and ensure the safety of people’s lives and properties.
Embankments on either bank play an important role in preventing floods, high tides and saltwater intrusion and protecting more than 8,000ha of specialised fruit-growing areas, mostly durian.
Nguyễn Văn Út, secretary of the Cẩm Sơn Commune Party Committee and chairman of its People’s Committee, said the commune needs large amounts of money to mitigate the erosion.
The People’s Committee has spent nearly VNĐ70 million (US$3,000) to fix minor erosions, build embankments and grow water hyacinth to prevent erosion, he said.
The province has various erosion prevention projects, according to its Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.
They also include planting more mangrove trees to keep out waves and winds, and grow water hyacinth in rivers and canals.
It tries to mobilise the public to undertake erosion prevention measures to protect their properties and lives.
The People’s Committee has instructed local authorities to check new erosion sites, make plans to mitigate them and relocate people and move construction projects from erosion-prone areas.
The province spent more than VNĐ153 billion ($6.7 million) last year repairing 126 eroded sites with a combined length of 8,600m.
The Government provided it with VNĐ150 billion ($6.6 million) last year for erosion prevention projects along the coast in Gò Công Đông District and Kênh 28 Canal in Cái Bè District. They have been completed and have proven effective.
Upgrades to sea dyke
The People’s Committee has decided to go ahead with the second phase of upgrade of the sea dyke in Gò Công Đông District.
The project involves building a new concrete wave prevention embankment running 5,400m, consolidating existing embankments and upgrading sluices in them.
It will cost nearly VNĐ200 billion ($8.8 million).
The existing dyke is able to resist storms of up to level 9 and keep out high tides, protecting 37,000ha of farmlands and thousands of households.
It also serves as a coastal road. — VNS