Climate Change in the Mekong River Delta and Key Concerns on Future Climate Threats

  • Le Anh TuanEmail author
  • Suppakorn Chinvanno
Part of the Advances in Global Change Research book series (AGLO, volume 45)


The Mekong River Delta in Vietnam is the largest agriculture and aquaculture production region of the nation. As the most downstream part of the Mekong River to both the East Sea and the Gulf of Thailand, the majority of the Delta is slightly under 2 m above sea level. Historically and practically, the people of the Delta have settled in the highest densities along the river and banks of the connected canals. Human life, agriculture and aquaculture production, and domestic water supplies in the Delta depend highly on the meteorological and hydrological regimes of the region. However, Delta livelihoods are sensitive and could be threatened by climate change and hydrological cycles. Future climate projection from the regional climate model indicates that the Mekong River Delta region will likely be warmer in the future with longer and drier summers. Seasonal ­patterns could be altered under the influence of global warming. Moreover, changes in climate patterns in the upstream region of the Mekong River may affect the flood regime of the Mekong Delta, which may lead to an extension of the ­current boundaries of flooding patterns. These changes raise many concerns, especially in terms of those who make their living from agriculture and aquaculture, because of their significant potential for creating new environmental challenges in the Mekong River Delta.


Climate change Scenarios The Mekong River Delta Flood Threats 



We would like to thank the Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research (APN) for financial support of a research project, “Climate Change in Southeast Asia and Assessment on Impact, Vulnerability and Adaptation on Rice Production and Water Resource,” which provided the foundation for the development of this chapter. Further thanks to the Met Office Hadley Centre, UK, for their technical support, especially for technical transfer assistance with regional climate modeling. Additional thanks to the Water and Development Research Group, Helsinki University of Technology, Finland, for joint study activities in the ­project “Water and Climate Change in the Lower Mekong Basin: Diagnosis and Recommendations for Adaptation,” which has provided essential information for this chapter.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.DRAGON Institute – Mekong – CanTho UniversityCanTho CityVietnam
  2. 2.Southeast Asia START Regional CenterChulalongkorn UniversityBangkokThailand

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