Home teaches me some lessons

Tomorrow is my last full day at home before I come back to the on-going painful research in Melbourne 😉 Within a month here, I have met many people and from any, I could always find a warm heart and a progressive spirit. That surprised me as Vietnam’s economy is in a so-considered hardest and most unstable condition since the last decade. Frankly, I can see more worrying faces than before. However, people here are becoming more creative, thoughtful and practical. Indeed, they actively think about what they really want to do and what they have to do to survive or to help their family survive. They almost waste no time on what is useless. They invest more on things of the future. Those are their children and education for their children. Even some sellers in cloths and mobile shops are sending their children oversea for studying. They are all looking up.

I don’t think they are optimistic, I feel that they are so strong at the edge.

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Combating desertification

On the occasion of the World Day to Combat Desertification (June 17), I’ve found an informative article on ABC.

By 2030, global food needs will grow by 50 per cent, water by 30 per cent and energy demand by 45 per cent, claiming more productive land.

But every year, 12 million hectares of land is lost through desertification and drought alone. This is an area half the size of United Kingdom and could produce 20 million tonnes of grain per year. Globally, about 75 billion tonnes of fertile soil is lost forever each year. Overall, about 1.5 billion people live off degrading land, of whom 74 per cent are the poor.

I’ve worked on desertification and shifting sand dunes for my undergraduate thesis and can see how tough the problem is. In fact, it is not just an adverse phenomenon for land, it could turn out like a disaster. In 2006, I’ve witnessed half a house in Quang Binh Province alive buried by sand in one night. This was somewhat similar to landslide which happened in Uganda yesterday.

Databases of Vietnam

Recently I’ve struggled just to look for database on mangroves in Ca Mau Province of Vietnam. Thus I will create one for my own here:

Maps:

Maps of world

General:

GSO

CIA

WB and Climate change knowledge portal and Climate adaptation profile

EUCC (not much about Vietnam)

GHGs emission:

World Resources Institute

Vulnerability monitor:

Dara int

Disasters:

Prevention web (Great database that linked to all others). This web publishes the Global Assessment Report (GAR)

and desinventar (Ca Mau)

Risk map by Maplecroft (for thesis, indicate which are the main risks)

Mangroves:

WB reports: (search for “Coastal wetlands protection, Vietnam” or “Mangrove Vietnam”)

Mangroves for the future

Climate change response:

Csiro

Floods an disasters in Vietnam:

CCFSC (and other categories)

Weather database and simulation:

MarkSim GCM (Rainfall, Temperature, Radiation)

UEA

Wave, tide and wind:

Oceanweather , CYCLOPS

buoyweather (the premium is great)

internalwaveatlas

Mangrove, dikes in Kien Giang

AUSAID

Climate change activities in Vietnam

This is a list of climate change activities in Vietnam up to 24/01/2011, provided by WB. If the link doesn’t work, the file could be found here.

List of AusAID’s climate change assistance to Vietnam (Current -2011 – and planned)

On going projects on Climate change response  in Mekong and Camau:

1/Integrated coastal and mangrove forest protection for climate change adaptation (KfW) (27/06/2012), part of this big project.

2/ Dike in West Sea of Ca Mau

3/ ARCC

4/ GIZ and AUSAID in one project CCCEP which is summarized here

5/ Protection mangrove rehabilitation by WB (1999-2007). Video, Summary

Statistic of Ca Mau:

1/ Statistic office of Ca Mau

2/ Nien giam thong ke CM2011

Cutting edge thinking about Ca Mau and Mekong Delta:

1/http://www.vietecology.org/Article.aspx/Group/1

Coastal dike, how it should be

A rising concern recently is whether coastal dike project is economically good? What is the benefit of the dike at the present?

I would say coastal dike is good for some areas, and not for the others. And the reason could be lighted up in these two recent projects:

Firstly, it is noticeable that the two projects attempted to minimize the length of dike by choosing reasonable position.

Secondly, both the dikes wouldn’t provide only protection value but also territory enlargement (What we concern here is increasing land for using). The benefit of land increasing could possibly be accounted in the present or future benefit of the project.

So there are at least two more reasons to doubt about the feasibility of Quang Ngai – Kien Giang sea dike project.