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Tue Nov 27, 2012, 07:58 PM

Vietnam is experiencing longer typhoon/flood seasons “storms are tracking into new coastal areas"

Vietnam is experiencing longer typhoon and flood seasons while “storms are tracking into new coastal areas”

AN BIEN, Vietnam, Nov 25 2012 (IPS) - For the last decade, many families in this southwestern Vietnamese province have been uprooted at least once every two years – but this is not due to economic or political upheaval.


“Each year, sea waves have eroded about three to four metres of land,” says a 47- year-old fisher from the Tay Yen commune. “Our family had to move five times, (and) now our house is four metres from the sea.”

But this is obviously not far enough. Already, the floors of the house are wet with seawater and a tree standing in what was once the fisherman’s front yard has now become the marker for his casting point.

The fisherman, who has lived in this commune for the last 20 years, says he would have pulled up stakes and moved on once more if only he had money.

He finds no comfort in the fact that throughout Vietnam’s many other coastal communities, and even in the Mekong Delta, thousands of others are suffering the same plight.


Indeed, a December 2010 World Bank report said that Vietnam is experiencing longer typhoon and flood seasons while “storms are tracking into new coastal areas”.

It also noted that Vietnam “may be one of the top five countries in the world likely to be most affected by sea level rise”, adding that records already show a sea level increase of about three millimeters annually from 1993 to 2008.


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