Sustainable adaptation of coastal agro-ecosystems to increased salinity intrusion (DeltAdapt)

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    Project Manager :
    Fabrice Renaud

    The DeltAdapt project explores the socio-ecological sustainability of coastal agro-ecosystems in the Mekong and Red River Deltas, Vietnam and their adaptation and adaptability to salinity intrusion and market challenges. The main focus is on management shifts between paddy rice, rice-shrimp farming, and saline aquaculture, because these on-farm adaptation processes to salinity intrusion have immense consequences for soil quality and biodiversity as well as livelihoods and trade. Particular attention is therein paid to rural-urban-linkages in relation to the massive urbanization process in both deltas. Additionally, DeltAdapt aims to develop options that enable farmers to stop the ongoing removal of topsoil and to reverse soil fertility loss. This BMBF-funded project responds to the central aims of the German National Research Strategy BioEconomy 2030 in order to deliver practice-oriented information that will enable the sustainable shaping of agricultural landscapes of coastal agro-ecosystems. Both, the research approach and the implementation of the results are based on the dual involvement of German and Vietnamese scientists as well as local stakeholders and German and Vietnamese SMEs. Within the DeltAdapt consortium UNU-EHS is involved with the EVES and VARMAP sections. The institute contributes to: • the analysis of the environmental, social, economic and political drivers of agro-ecological changes in these deltas, • the assessment of risk and the evaluation of adaptation options with regards to the interlocking effects of increasing salinization, environmental pollution, management shifts and socio-economic transformation, • the assessment of the specific risks and mitigation options associated with topsoil removal, • the evaluation of different land use options based on the regionalized scenarios of salinity intrusion and farmers’ livelihoods, and • the development of recommendations for sustainable agricultural policies and livelihood practices.