Second Red River Basin | Vietnam
The Red River Delta of northern Vietnam has been cultivated for more than 2,600 years. Early farmers relied on irrigation through canals and dikes to flood rice paddies. One of the country’s most valuable resources, the 170,000-kilometer delta drains into the Gulf of Tonkin and the South China Sea.
Modern farmers were threatened by salt water intrusion and flooding from the Red River and the Gulf of Tonkin. Deforestation had increased soil erosion and flash floods. Water quality had declined. Reducing poverty for the delta’s mostly rural population was a challenge.
The Vietnamese government, assisted by the Asian Development Bank, sponsored the Second Red River Basin Sector Project. Louis Berger was selected by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to supervise the rehabilitation of irrigation, flood-protection, drainage and watershed protection systems. In addition to training Vietnamese engineers in modern operation and management techniques, Louis Berger:
- Compiled detailed documentation on water use and irrigation and drainage operating conditions.
- Worked with the Vietnamese Institutes for Water Resources Management and Research to identify opportunities for improved watershed management.
- Helped regional cooperatives identify and construct small-scale infrastructure, including on-farm irrigation canals, pumps, footbridges and potable water access.