Viet Nam

Viet Nam: Drought and Saltwater Intrusion Situation Update No. 6 (as of 16 September 2016)

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Situation Report
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This report is produced by Office of the Resident Coordinator Viet Nam. It covers the period from 30 July to 16 September 2016. The next report will be issued as new information becomes available.

Highlights

  • Recently, rains have also started in South-Central Viet Nam, but overall rainfall remains below annual averages in all three affected regions.

  • The most recent Government La Niña forecast is at 50-60% likelihood, starting from autumn, with low to moderate intensity.

  • Dengue fever cases have increased more than usual this year, with a particularly severe situation in the Central Highlands and South-Central Vietnam.

  • Drought emergency relief distributions have accelerated over the past weeks, with extensive delivery of rice, water containers, purification tablets, filters, hygiene kits, nutritional supplements, seeds, fertilizer etc.

  • At the end of August, more than 34% or US$16.7 million of the emergency requirement has been funded, not including the majority of the Government relief.

  • The Government developed a Drought Recovery Plan, estimating recovery needs at US$166 million for 2016.

18 Provinces affected

2m People facing water stress

1.75m People lost incomes

659,476ha Crops damaged or lost

0.35% GDP Estimated total economic loss

34% Emergency appeal covered

Situation Overview

Over the past weeks, rains have finally commenced in the South-Central region also, bringing much needed relief to the drought affected households. However, rainfall totals remain far below the average annual rainfall in all affected regions.

River water levels in the upstream Mekong Delta are increasing but mid-September still on average 1.5m below normal levels, and up to 2m below flood levels. Water levels are projected to increase gradually over the coming weeks due to increased upstream rainfall in the past weeks.
On 16 August, the National Center for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting (NCHMF) has issued an updated La Niña forecast. The forecast indicates a 50 to 60% probability of La Niña conditions occurring from autumn this year, with a low to moderate intensity. As a consequence of this, the annual storm season is likely to end later, the North-East monsoon will start earlier and flooding will occur more frequently in the last months of the year, particularly in Central Viet Nam. An updated forecast will be issued on 15 October 2016.

In recent months, a spike in dengue fever cases was reported with a particularly severe situation in the Central Highlands and the South-Central Vietnam region. By mid-August, drought affected provinces that saw a particular sharp to very sharp increase compared to 2015 occurrence are: Kon Tum, Ninh Thuan, Gia Lai, Dak Lak, Lam Dong and Dak Nong. In addition to these, other severely affected provinces with more than 2,000 cases are Khanh Hoa and Binh Thuan. The current outbreak is attributed to a combination of the drought, overstretched resources as well as an existing low immunity among the affected population due to the cyclical nature of dengue outbreaks.
The peak of the outbreak is expected for September-October.