Mekong delta prepares for dry season

Many provinces in the Cửu Long (Mekong) Delta are taking measures to secure freshwater for farming and household use since drought and saltwater intrusion is expected to be severe in the 2016-17 dry season.  Nguyễn Thiện Pháp, head of the Tiền Giang Province Irrigation Sub-department, said according to the Central Centre for Hydrometeorology Forecasting, the drought and saltwater encroachment into rivers would occur earlier than normal years. Rivers are expected to have a salt content of 2 grammes per litre 55-60km inland in March and April next year, he said. Saltwater has already flowed 20km up the Tiền River in Tiền Giang, according to the province’s Irrigation Sub-department. Tiền Giang’s three eastern districts, Gò Công Tây, Gò Công Đông and Tân Phú Đông, which are often affected by drought and saltwater, have reduced the number of annual rice crops and switched to cash crops that require less water.

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