Flood early warning system for Hoi An a step closer after inception workshop
Members of the Urban Climate Change Resilience Trust Fund (UCCRTF) on 29 October joined the inception workshop for the ADB- and UCCRTF-supported flood forecasting and early warning system project in Hoi An, Viet Nam.
Hoi An is a provincial city in Quang Nam Province in the south-central coastal region of Viet Nam. The city is exposed to several climate-related stresses, including sea level rise, coastal and riverbank erosion, salt water intrusion, and flooding.
In March, the province launched a project to improve the flood forecasting, warning services, and response capacity of the government in an effort to reduce the impact of meteorologically induced natural hazards in the Vu Gia-Thu Bon river basin area.
UCCRTF’s Okju Jeong and Thanh Van, who is the Viet Nam city resilience officer, attended the workshop, which had over 30 participants from various departments of the Quang Nam Province, Hoi An City, and Da Nang City, as well as representatives from the water sector and technical consultants.
Vice Chairman of Quang Nam PPC Le Tri Thanh opened the meeting, emphasizing that the workshop provided an opportunity for all the organizations involved to share ideas and suggestions to shape the project as it is implemented.
Participants engaged in active discussions and suggested ways on how the project’s implementation plan could be improved. For example, one participant from the Hydro-Meteorological Station of the Central Region noted that the project would have to carefully consider the number and density of weather stations in the downstream areas of the basin, as the system would rely heavily on accurate data collection in this region.
Representatives from the Steering Committee for Natural Disaster Prevention and Control in Quang Nam Province also stressed the importance of proper implementation and system maintenance after the flood forecasting and warning systems have been developed. This includes defining which agencies or organizations have the legal responsibility to run this system and establishing a legal framework for implementing this system.
Following the inception workshop, participants joined a site visit to the Giao Thuy area, upstream of Vu Gia-Thu Bon river basin. Giao Thuy sits at the confluence of the Vu Gia and Thu Bon rivers, and has suffered serious flooding in recent years. While the river flowed peacefully on that day, during the rainy season rising water levels result in flooding, affecting local communities residing downstream.
Thanh Van is an urban climate resilience project coordinator at Plan International Viet Nam. She is also a consultant serving as the Viet Nam city resilience officer to the Urban Climate Change Resilience Trust Fund.
Cue Dai beach at Hoi An has suffered significant erosion in recent years (photo by Thanh Van).
UCCRTF also visited Cua Dai beach in Hoi An City, where sand bags had been placed along the shoreline to protect it from coastal erosion after large parts of the beach were washed away. With support from UCCRTF, Hoi An will undertake additional research on the coastal erosion problem at Cua Dai beach.
The success of the implementation meeting is a product of many months of engagement by ADB and the municipal government. Instrumental to this was the role played by ADB’s Hoi An Project Management Unit, which helped facilitate engagement and cooperation among project partners.