Establishing a surface water quality monitoring network for the Mekong delta, Vietnam

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Establishing a surface water quality monitoring network for the Mekong delta, Vietnam

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The MD of Vietnam is located at the most downstream part of the Mekong river basin. With a population of 17 million inhabitants living in 4 million hectares of land, the MD has great potentials for agricultural production. The MD is the most important agricultural production region for the whole country. It supplies for more than 50% of staple food and 60% of fish production and accounts for 27% of the total GDP of Vietnam. Rice and fishery products contribute significantly to the nation’s export earning......

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  1. PROPOSAL ON ESTABLISHING A SURFACE-WATER QUALITY MONITORING NETWORK FOR THE MEKONG DELTA, VIETNAM prepared by College of Technology, CanTho University, Vietnam (Version 22 July 2004) --- oOo --- I. INTRODUCTION AND RATIONALE 1.1 The Mekong Delta and its main environmental problem Mekong River, the 11th largest river in the world, is the main water source for irrigation, fishery, and domestic use… In short, the living of the whole population in the Mekong Delta (MD) is depending and will be depended on this resource. The MD of Vietnam is located at the most downstream part of the Mekong river basin. With a population of 17 million inhabitants living in 4 million hectares of land, the MD has great potentials for agricultural production. The MD is the most important agricultural production region for the whole country. It supplies for more than 50% of staple food and 60% of fish production and accounts for 27% of the total GDP of Vietnam. Rice and fishery products contribute significantly to the nation’s export earning. The MD is a typical river delta, with a dense water system of natural creeks, small rivers. Besides, artificial canals for irrigation, drainage and navigation have been constructed throughout the whole region. Farmers, accounted for 85% of the total population, are living in communities, which are split into small parcels, along the waterways. Only 30% of them can access to safe water, the rest using directly surface water at the rivers or canals. Unfortunately, as the consequences of a fast-growing economy, which is strongly based on agriculture, the region is facing more and more severe environmental problems like pollution of water resources by pesticides, fertilizers and animals manure, etc., especially since the past ten years. While most of local farmers have to depend totally on the surface water for drinking, irrigating their crops, fishing, aquaculture, etc., protection of this water source is crucial to ensure sustainable development of the MD. Recognizing this urgent issue, recently the Vietnamese government has promulgated two important decrees in order to protect the water resource. These are: The decree No. 200 of the Prime Minister dated April 4th, 1994 The decree No. 36 CT/TW dated June 25th, 1998. However, the surface water quality in the MD is still changing in the complicated way due to following: 1.2 Problems related with water Located at the downstream end of the River, the MD will face all possible impacts from upstream activities, which cause changes in quantity and/or quality of water (Ta Quang Ngoc 2000). 1
  2. Surface-water quality problems are classified according to natural conditions due to topography and geology of the delta. The development of the delta at the moment and in the near future, beside positive impact, will also lead to environmental pollution. Development of agricultural sector and urbanization are main issues affect the water quality. Use of excess and improper of fertilizer leads to enrich water body by nutrients together with poor drainage in impression areas in the MD, will impair water quality. Trophic state of water body at present is in hypertrophic level; in addition the use of pesticide, fungicide, insecticides is not controlled. Most of micro- organic pollutants are DDT, DDE, Dieldrin… Rapid urbanization in some rural areas, combined with backward behaviors as making on the canal overhung latrines, directly discharge of domestic wastes to canal system without any treatment and others cause oxygen deficiency in water body. 1.2.1 Problems on water quantity 1. Shortage of fresh water for irrigation in the dry season In 1999, a total area of 1.4 millions ha of spring-rice crop (dry season crop) needs irrigation. Water demands are increased proportional with rice cultivation areas. From 1995 to 1999, newly reclaimed areas available for rice cultivation has increased by 105.000 ha/year (Statistical Yearbook 2000). The main thrust of water resources development may be on-farm development and canal improvement (enlargement of existing, and construction of new primary and secondary canals) to bring more irrigation water to the already irrigated areas and to improve drainage conditions and promote flushing of acid water. Embankment improvement in the deeply flooded areas could prevent flooding till the end of August. In the shallow flooded, already more developed areas; full year round protection is possible. Both rainfall and river flow have a pronounced seasonal patterns. Periods of water excess alternate with periods of water shortage, and water control measures must essentially adapt to this regime feature. Virtually the only source of water for irrigation is the Mekong River, which can with relatively minor improvements of the existing canal system, be channeled to all part of the MD except for the southern and western part of the Ca Mau Peninsula. The discharges of the Mekong river system are adequate to meet the irrigation water requirement during the early part of the dry season and in June, a month with frequent dry spells after the start of the wet season. However, during the March – May period, Mekong discharges are low and are required to prevent deep saline water intrusion. Higher rates of abstraction would increase salinity intrusion which is already affecting large areas. 2. Flood An area of 1.2 to 1.9 millions ha of the MD is under annual floods. The severity degree and frequency of the floods is increased. Within the past forty years, four substantial floods have occurred in the following years: 1961, 1978, 1991 and 2000. During the period of high river discharges, the banks of the Mekong river system are overtopped on a large scale and the land is inundated. This inundation usually starts in July /August ands in November/December. As there is considerable attenuation of the river water levels and progressively increased capacity of the river system downstream, the river flood inundation decrease downstream. In the south, excess rainwater also leads to large-scale inundation of the land outside the river-flooding zone. This occurs especially in the southwestern part of the MD, 2
  3. typically in June/July. Large areas remain waterlogged and inundated for most of the rainy season. In view of the limitations on land use imposed by excess water due to flooding and rain, the dry season is the main crop production season. The discharges of the Mekong river system are quite adequate to meet the irrigation water requirements of the Delta during the early part of the dry season. However, during the February ÷ May period Mekong discharges are low. Appreciable net outflow from the Delta is required to prevent deep saline water intrusion. The river and canal water in many parts of the coastal area is too saline to be used for irrigation purposes. The affected zone is rather small at the beginning of the irrigation season, but irrigation intake points become affected as the salinity intrudes further inland in parallel with decreases in net outflow from the MD. Acidification of canal water is a problem in areas with large concentrations of acid sulfate soils; especially during May ÷ July when the acids from the soil enter the canals with drainage of the early rains. Acidification of canal water can in general be managed by providing adequate through-flow in the effected area, but as reclamation of acid sulfate soils progresses this may not longer hold true. The subsoil of the MD contains huge quantities of groundwater. Its exploitation, however, is constrained by 3 factors: (1) the quantity of the water in the five aquifer, mainly salinity, (2) the permeability of the aquifers, and (3) the fresh water recharge of the aquifers, which determine the safe yield. However, when considering the expected urbanization in the MD, this quantity is actually small. It should therefore be reserved for urban and rural water supply use only, predominantly for rural areas and town that cannot avail of good quality surface water. 1.2.2 Problems on water quality 1. Acid sulfate soils In large parts of the MD, clayey sediments deposited under brackish or saline conditions contain soluble sulfates. In these, sulfate-reducing bacteria convert the sulfate to sulfides under anaerobic conditions. This result in the formation of hydrogen sulfide – a highly toxic gas – and iron sulfide, pyrites, FeS2, an insoluble non-toxic compound. Acid sulfate soils, form when soils containing iron sulfide are exposed to oxygen, cover 1.6 millions ha (40%) of the MD (Minh et al. 1996). Soils with high iron sulfide content do not usually become a problem so long as the soil remains inundated (Brinkman, Ve, et al. 1993). Agricultural activities in the acid sulfate soils, especially in the large scale in the 2 severely acid regions, Plain of Reeds and Long Xuyen Quadrangular (with a total surface area of more than 1 million ha), major cause of water pollution in the region. The most significant detrimental properties of acid sulfate soils are: • Release of acid (and sometimes toxic) drainage water which causes detrimental impacts on the environment downstream. • Fixation of phosphorus in the form of insoluble aluminum or iron phosphate. This locks up phosphate from surface and groundwater, leading to phosphorus deficiency and a fall in primary productivity. 2. Salinity intrusion Salinity intrusion is the most important effect that influences water quality in the MD. Currently, 1.7 millions ha of the delta (42%) is under salinity intrusion (SIWRMP 1995). Salinity intrusion is the principal limit factor of agricultural production (most of the are is under mono-crop of 3
  4. rice), where located most of the poor provinces with a high ratio of poor farmers. Shortage of drinking water is another diversity for local people. In order to prevent further salinity intrusion, it is necessary to keep flows from dropping too low (WB-ADB 1996). The reduced freshwater flows allow salt water to penetrate further upstream into the estuarine channels, changing the chemical environment and causing substantial changes in the species composition of the local ecological communities. A major effect has been to reduce the growth of the littoral brackish forests which help to bind the soft silt soils, and this permits enhanced erosion rates of the seaward coastline in many areas of the MD. The delta experiences severe salt intrusion through channels and creeks, reaching a peak in April/May, corresponding to the end of the dry season and the lowest flows in the Mekong river system. In some areas, salinity has led to the contamination of the sweet water in near surface aquifers, to the point at which it is unfit for consumption. 3. Pathogenic pollution and public health problems Domestic wastewater contains pathogenic bacteria, viruses and parasitic organisms which originate from human and animal waste. Conventional physical and biological sewage treatment processes, when available reduce the number of these organisms, but the large number remaining represent a severe public health hazard. Especially at risk are people who use the water for cooking, washing and bathing in contaminated waters. Also at serious risk are those who consume fish, shellfish and other aquatic animals and plants that have accumulated pathogens from the water in which they live. Shellfish grown in polluted waters are particularly liable to infect consumers, since they filter large volume of water in feeding and may be consumed raw or after insufficient cooking. During the dry season, there is in many areas in the delta a serious lack of drinking water. The water quality of the surface-water of the delta has a tendency to get worse when going downstream. Because of rapid urbanization in the Delta that leads to high population densities. The low basic sanitary condition, in form of overhung latrines above public channels and fishponds it is expected that the surface-water contain high concentrations of fecal coliform bacteria. Most of wastewater is diverted directly into the rivers and the canals. In addition, people living along the rivers and the canals or in boats dispose solids and liquid waste into the water. Besides, feeding fish by night soil in the fishponds connected to the rivers or canals is a popular economic source which makes the surface-water contaminated. As many people in the area drinks straight from the surface water, enteric infections and diarrhea diseases are widely spread in the area. If appropriate measures are not taken to reduce the discharges of domestic waste products into the ambient environment, then probably the capacity of the nature to decompose and turnover these waste products will be exceeded in the near future. This assumption is based on the dramatically increase in the growth of population in the past 20 years. The development of the MD in the near future is expected in high rate in which urbanization will cause serious degradation of water quality. 4. Organic pollution Besides causing aesthetic water pollution problems, dumping or discharge of organic matter into receiving water bodies also creates oxygen deficiency. After being discharged into the water the 4
  5. organic matter starts decomposing. This process is oxygen consuming and temperature dependent and the high temperature in the Mekong River system all the year around will accelerate this process. If the receiving water bodies do not have the oxygen renewal capacity which is required to accommodate the amount of discharge organic matter, oxygen depletion can result in killing of fish and other aquatic organisms which depend on oxygen from the water itself. The variation of dissolved oxygen is quite various at different sites in the MD. Oxygen saturation levels in the relatively high temperature water of the Mekong River system are comparatively low, and an average BOD of 3 mg/L corresponds to actual concentrations of dissolved oxygen of only around 5 mg/L. Many river fish become respiratory dependent at or near this level. This means that the hemoglobin in their blood is unable to carry its full potential loading oxygen, and this may alter their ability to survive or compete with others less affected. So apparently harmless low levels of organic pollution may still have substantial environmental impacts at the species level. If adversely affected species are significant in human diets, then there may be negative impacts on human nutrition and health. 5. Agro-chemical pollution Nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus are essential for the growth of all plants. Discharge of nutrients into the rivers might be beneficial to the growth of algae and seaweeds and thus to other aquatic biota as well as for irrigation purposes. High concentrations of nutrient from domestic sewage and industrial effluent or excess fertilizer runoff from cropped areas into rivers might result in dense algal growth and eutrophication problems. In eutrophic (nutrient enriched) conditions, the ability of the heavy blooms of phytoplankton to detoxify organic and some inorganic contaminants may be very high. Whilst this may appear reduce the environmental risks from toxic pollutants, the subsequent incorporation into the food chain after the algae have been grazed by zooplankton and larger herbivores, with its attendant probability of unpredictable biological accumulation at higher trophic levels, raises other risks to the stability of the dynamics of the ecological communities. These may include selective mortality of species and unquantifiable – but nevertheless, very real – public health hazards. Every year, floodwater inundates a great part of the delta area and carries biocide residues into the river system for dispersal into the sea at the coast. However, the picture is complicated by the common practice of adulterating these expensive chemicals with large quantities of cheaper and, fortunately, usually much less toxic adulterants. In all estuaries, the relatively short zone in which the fresh/saline water interface ebbs and follows with each tide represents an efficient “nutrient trap”, in which many minor chemical contaminants become concentrated. Because of the uncertainty of the actual active ingredient concentration of these materials, and the poor records of their use, no reliable data on the potential risks to the general inland environments can be calculated. There is an urgent need for monitoring their presence in the estuarine nutrient trap zones, since their effects on communities in this zone may be far more significant than in many other habitats. 6. Hazardous substances pollution Dumping of solid waste products in landfills will always create a potential risk of leaching of environmentally hazardous substances and contamination of groundwater and surface waters. Discharge of industrial wastewater which contains toxic substances and accidental spill of chemicals during transportation may result in serious environmental pollution. Toxic substances 5
  6. that will accumulate in the environment, such as certain metals, pesticides and other organic substances resistant to bio-degradation, require particularly cautious regulation since their effect may be irreversible or present hazards to consumers of the water, i.e. for drinking or aquatic organisms. At present the MD is not detrimentally impacted due to discharges of industrial waste products. However, in near future with rapid development in the region, this should be taken into consideration, the responsible environmental authorities has to establish an industrial management plan aiming at protection the environment against industrial discharges. Annually, Department of Science Technology and Environment (DOSTE) of 11 provinces in the MD organized two campaigns for monitoring surface-water quality. Those activities are useful when they want to observe about surface-water quality in their basin. In addition, those results could be used to orient the development of their provinces. However, the results of this campaign could not be used in the effective way because of the following reasons: • The sampling and analyzing techniques are varied from province to province. • There is not a common format for managing the data. As the consequent, up to now, the whole picture of the water pollution evolution of the MD cannot be drawn. Recognizing the urgent need of the establishment of a Water quality monitoring network for the MD that use the unified technique and data base for sharing the information, Cantho University (CTU), the center of education and research in the MD (see annex) is writing this project proposal calling for support. 6
  7. II. OBJECTIVES OF THE PROJECT 2.1 Overall objective Establishing the Mekong Delta Water Quality Monitoring Network in which CTU will be the center of this network. The members of this network are CTU and DOSTEs in the MD, other institutions in the countries along the Mekong River. These members will use the same analysis, sampling methods and equipment. They will build a unified database for recording and sharing data. The data will be used for prediction the change of surface-water quality in the MD. 2.2 Specific objectives 1. Increasing the awareness of DOSTEs about the problem of existing surface-water quality monitoring activities and the need of establishment a surface-water quality network. 2. Enhancing the co-operation between eleven DOSTEs and CTU in surface water quality monitoring by establishment a surface water quality network in which CTU is the center. 3. The monitoring network will use the same equipments, sampling methods, analyzing methods. 4. Upgrading the capacity of lab technicians. 5. Establishing unify database for recording and sharing collected data. 6. Establishing a model for predicting the trend of water quality in the MD. 7
  8. III. ACTIVITIES 3.1 Partner coordinator missions to Vietnam Term of Reference: • Identification of project feasibility • Discussion on project management aspects • Need assessment: expert missions, training subjects, resources, etc. 3.2 Initiative workshop in Vietnam Target group: • Leaders, representatives of DOSTEs and Environmental Monitoring Station. • Staff of CTU who are teaching, doing the research on environmental issues Experts: • Experts from partner side • Experts of CTU 3.3 Training in Vietnam Topics: • Sampling methods • Analyzing methods, especially the ones that are suitable with used equipments. • Applied GIS to Water Management 3.4 Training in foreign country 2 MSc. in: • Applied Informatics in Water Quality Monitoring • Water Quality Management 3.5 Lab equipments The following equipments need to be equipped for the labs: pH meter DO meter Microorganism incubation chamber Sterilizing chamber Vacuum filtration set (for Suspended solid analyzing) Spectrophotometer (Hatch DR 4000) BOD incubator Hand-held GPS Computers 3.6 Library and Information Unit A bookshelf specializing on Water Resources Management to provide information to staff for their monitoring activities will be established. The information unit with a server for update and share the monitoring result will be establishes at managed at CTU. 8
  9. 3.7 Monitoring Twice a year the DOSTEs will organize the monitoring campaigns. The analyzing result will be recorded in the same format and send to information unit. The data will be processed by the experts of information unit then shared to the members of the network. IV. EXPECTED OUTPUTS 1. A water quality-monitoring network for the MD. 2. Qualified staff members (2 MSc., and 24 lab. technicians) specializing on water quality management, water quality monitoring, water quality analysis, computer network development and maintenance. 3. Well and synchronous-equipped Water Quality analysis Lab. 4. Information unit that can process and share the data to the members of the network. 5. Water quality computer models modified and adjusted to the conditions in the MD. V. DESCRIPTION OF PARTNER INVOLVED IN THE PROJECT Foreign partner: ………………………. Vietnamese partner: • Project leader: Prof. Le Quang Minh, Vice Rector, Dean (Dr. in Agricultural and Environmental Science, Wageningen University, Netherlands) • Coordinator: Mr. Le Hoang Viet, Director, Environmental Engineering and Renewable Energy Center, Vice dean, College of Technology, Cantho University (MSc. in Environmental Engineering, AIT, Bangkok, Thailand) • Member: Mr. Nguyen Hieu Trung, Vice Director, Environmental Engineering and Renewable Energy Center, Cantho University (MSc. in GIS, International Technology Center, The Netherlands) • Member: Mr. Le Anh Tuan, senior lecturer, College of Technology, CTU (MSc. in Water Resources Engineering, AIT, Thailand) • Member: Mr. Nguyen Vo Chau Ngan, lecturer, College of Technology, CTU (MSc. in Sanitary Engineering, Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium) • Members: representatives of DOSTE of eleven provinces in the MD 9
  10. VI. TIME SCHEDULE The project will be implemented in 5 years from 2003 - 2008 VII. ESTIMATED BUDGET The project will be carried out based on share-burden budget. The DOSTE will contribute the cost for analyzing water samples that are calculated as the followings: Contributing budget of DOSTEs Province Cost (US dollar/year) Total contribution in 5 years (US dollar) Dong Thap 1830 9150 An Giang 4730 23650 Bac Lieu 3680 18400 Ben Tre 2800 14000 Ca Mau 3505 17525 Can Tho 5610 28050 Kien Giang 3330 16650 Soc Trang 3330 16650 Tien Giang 3330 16650 Tra Vinh 5432 27160 Vinh Long 4556 22780 Total 41533 207665 CTU will contribute: • Room for information unit • Qualified staffs • Places to organize seminars, training courses • Man-power to develop and maintain computer network Foreign partner will contribute: • Cost for organizing seminars, training courses, project evaluation workshop • Cost for equipments • Experts’ cost 10
  11. These costs could be calculated as the followings: Investment Amount Total costs costs (USD) (US dollar) Training in foreign country - MSc. on in Water Quality Monitoring 35.000 01 35.000 - MSc. on in Water Quality Management 35.000 01 35.000 Training in Vietnam - Sampling methods 8.000 01 8.000 - Analyzing methods 8.000 01 8.000 - Applied GIS to Water Management 8.000 01 8.000 Annual workshop 4.000 05 20.000 Equipments - pH meter 700 12 8.400 - DO meter 800 12 9.600 - Microorganism incubation chamber 1200 12 14400 - Sterilizing chamber 900 12 10800 - Vacuum filtration set (for Suspended solid 950 12 11400 analyzing) - Autoclave 1200 12 14400 - Colony counter 500 12 6000 - Nitrogen distillation GEHART 3276 12 39312 - Electronic balance 1821 12 21852 - Spectrophotometer (Hatch DR 4000) 6.500 12 78.000 - BOD bottle (300 ml) 18 600 10800 - BOD incubator 2.000 12 24.000 - Hand-held GPS 500 12 6.000 - Computers + printers 1.800 15 27000 Books 1.000 12 12.000 Total 407964 11
  12. REFERENCE Axelsson, V. 1992. Sedimentation in the Nam Ngum Reservoir, Lao PDR. Uppsala University. Brinkman, W. R., Nguyen Bao Ve and Tran Kim Tinh. 1993. Sulfidic Materials in the Western Mekong Delta, Vietnam. Catena 20(3):317-331. Choowaaew Sansanee (ed.) 1992. Proceedings of the Workshop on Wetlands Management in the Lower Mekong Basin, 7-12 December 1992. Ho Chi Minh city. Vietnam. Hoang Tho Dien. 2000. Mekong Water Source for Development of Mekong Delta. In: Tran Cao Thanh (ed.) Vietnam and Mekong Sub-region Development Cooperation. The Gioi Publisher. Ha Noi. Lam Minh Triet and Nguyen Thanh Hung. 2001. Problems of Drinking Water Supply and Environment in Flood-Prone Areas in Mekong Delta. J. of Environmental Protection. Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment. Ha Noi. No. 4-2001 [In Vietnamese] Le Huy Ba. 2000. Introduction to Environment Management. Ho Chi Minh city National University Publishing House. Ho Chi Minh city [in Vietnamese] Le Quy An. 2000. Bio-diversification and Problems in Biological Resources Protection. No 8-2000: 6-10 [in Vietnamese] Miller, F., Nguyen Viet Thinh and Do Thi Minh Duc. 1999. Resources Management in the Vietnamese Mekong Basin. Asia Research Centre on Social, Political and Economic Change. Murdoch University. Western Australia. Minh L. Q. 1996. Integrated soil and water management in acid sulphate soils: Balancing agricultural production and environmental requirements in the Mekong Delta. Ph. D. thesis. Wageningen University. The Netherlands. Minh L. Q. 1996. Integrated soil and water management in acid sulphate soils. Balancing agricultural production and environmental requirements in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam. D. Sc. thesis. Wageningen University. Minh L.Q., T. P. Tuong and V. T. Xuan. 1996. Leaching of acid sulphate soils and its environmental hazard in the Mekong delta. In: G. L Denning and Vo Tong Xuan (eds.) Vietnam – IRRI a Partnership in Rice Research. IRRI and MAFI. pp 99-109. Minh L. Q., T. P. Tuong, H. W. G. Booltink, M. E. F. van Mensvoort and J. Bouma (1997a). Bypass flow and its role in leaching of raised beds under different land use types on an acid sulphate soil. J. of Agricultural Water Management 32: 131-145. Minh L. Q., T.P. Tuong, M. E. F. Mensvoort, and J. Bouma (1997b). Tillage and water management for increasing riceland productivity in the flood prone acid sulphate soil area of the Mekong river delta of Vietnam. Soil and Tillage Research 42: 1-14. Minh L. Q., T.P. Tuong, M.E.F. Mensvoort, and J. Bouma (1997c). Contamination of surface water as affected by land use in acid sulphate soils in the Mekong river delta, Vietnam. J. Water Management and Ecosystems 61: 19-27. 12
  13. NEDECO 1993. Mekong Delta Master Plan Study. A perspective for suitable development of land and water resources. World Bank. Volume I. Neue, H.U. and V.P. Singh. 1984. Management of wetland rice and fishponds on problem soils in the tropics. In: Seminar on Ecology and Management of Problem Soils in Asia. ASPAC. Taipei. pp. 352-366. Nguyen Hoang Tri. 1995. Environmental Issues and Priority Programs for Sustainable Development in Plain of Reeds. Oxfam America/NOVIB/CRES. Ha Noi University and Cantho University. Ni, D. V. 1997. A simple farming system on acid sulphate soils for the poor farmers. Paper presented in the workshop on Problem Soils. Cantho University. March 1997. Ongley, E. D. 1996. Control of water pollution from agriculture. FAO Irrigation and Drainage Paper 55. Rome. Phan Nguyen Hong and Hoang Thi San. 1993. Mangroves of Vietnam. Gland: IUCN Wetland Programme. Phan Xuan Su. 1996. Country Paper of Vietnam. In (W. L. Arriens, J. Bird, J. Berkoff, et al., eds.) Towards Effective Water Policy in Asian and Pacific Region: Volume 2 - Country Papers. Proceedings of the Regional Consultation Workshop – Towards a Policy for Water Resources Development in the Asian and Pacific Region. Manila, Philippines, 10-14 May 1996. ADB Manila. SIWRMP (Sub-Institute of Water Resources Management and Planning). 1995. Major Issues in Water Resources Development in the Mekong Delta. Ho Chi Minh city. Ta Quang Ngoc 2000. Vietnam’s Objective to Sustainably Utilize the Economic and Nutritional Potential of the Aquatic Resources in the Mekong Delta. In: Tran Cao Thanh (ed.) Vietnam and Mekong Sub-region Development Cooperation. The Gioi Publisher. Ha Noi. Tran Duc Kham 1988. Water quality reclamation in the Plain of Reeds in the 80’s. Proceeding of Workshop on Water Quality in Lower Mekong River. Ho Chi Minh city. September 1988. International Mekong Committee. World Bank/ADB/FAO/UNDP/NGO/GOV. 1996. Vietnam: Water Resources Sector Review. Washington. 13
  14. ANNEX 1 Figure 1. Network of monitoring waterways for surface-water quality in MD 14
  15. Figure 2. Network of sampling points for surface-water quality in MD 15
  16. ANNEX 2 INTRODUCTION TO CANTHO UNIVERITY Cantho University (CTU) was founded in 1966 with the name "Institute of Cantho University" consisting of three campuses with the land area of 71 ha. When the country was liberated, CTU has been under the direct management of Ministry of University and Professional & Vocational Training, now Ministry of Education and Training. Since 1975, CTU has made many improvements in organization, curricula, content and training objectives to meet the demand of the amount and types of profession in the MD. The total building area of CTU is 88,331 m2 consisting of solid and semi-solid buildings such as halls, studying rooms, libraries, labs, and teaching facilities. Most of these buildings are in a deteriorated state and have not been renovated and re-equipped for a long time. Available teaching and practicing facilities have not met the needs of the university's training programs. 1. Training CTU offers 43 undergraduate training programs with an undergraduate student population of 15,300. Most of them are from the MD (95%) and they are mostly from rural areas1. CTU has trained over 23,000 students achieving bachelor degrees in pedagogy, agriculture, technology, sociology and medicine. The university also offers higher education (MA and Ph.D.) in 6 majors: Agronomy, Animal Husbandry, Biology, Environment, Biotechnology, and Microbiology, with a total of 300 students. The university also offers specialized courses in Economics, Hydrology, Agronomy, and other subjects to ethnic minority groups. In response to the demand of training for training in the MD, CTU also helps some provinces in the region to open in-service centers. The number of students in these centers in 2001 was 14,600. The university assists these centers by training staff, sending lecturers, and providing teaching curricula. Since the school year 1995-1996, the university has applied the credit administration and training system. Now, this work has been completed and is in use. This new training process helps students be active in deciding their study. CTU's training programs are very practical for the region due to the following: • Using and applying data and information specific to the region in research and training. • Students of agronomy, pedagogy, medicine and other majors practice, research and do graduation papers in rural communities in the MD. • From 1990 to 1996 CTU built new buildings, with a total area of 24,758 m2, for studying and doing experiments, student accommodation, and other uses. Of the area, studying buildings occupy 3,405 m2, labs: 8,269 m2; dorms 677 m2; houses: 1,220 m2; gym: 1,500 m2. 1 Tran Phuoc Duong & D. Sloper. 1995. Serving National goals and the local comminity: The case of Cantho University. In: Sloper, D. & Le Thac Can (eds.) Higher education in Vietnam. Change and Response. pp 211-228. Institute of Southeast Asian Studies. Singapore. 16
  17. • In recent years, facilities for training, experimenting, researching have been much upgraded, typically in College of Agriculture, College of Basic Sciences, College of Information Technology, School of Medicine-Dentistry-Pharmacy, and College of Technology. There are 472 computers along with file servers connected into 13 LANs. In most of the colleges and schools, more and more students can use computers to do exercises, graduation papers, research, and practice. • To serve the training activities, CTU has a good library system appreciated by many foreign delegations. The library system is branched into 3 levels: Central library for the whole university, college libraries and reference book corners. The central library has one reading room with 400 seats and over 30,000 items, 1,000 magazines and 35 CD- ROMs. Also, some colleges have their own libraries for specialized research, such as School of Medicine-Dentistry-Pharmacy, College of Agriculture, College of Information Technology, and College of Technology. 2. Scientific Research CTU is prominent in agriculture and biotechnology research. This research has been diversified over the past two years 1996-1998. Research has covered a variety of fields, including education, basic science, information technology, ecological environment protection, engineering, medicine, and economics. CTU’s one important task is also to speed up international co-operation for capital, personnel training, learning facilities and to study the social and cultural development in the MD. CTU is especially concerned with applying scientific achievements to practical production in order to industrialize and modernize the MD because this region is rich in productive land and agricultural resources. Many young teachers, who have been following post-graduate courses both inside and outside Vietnam in recent years, have been participating in the university's research projects and achieved many accomplishments. 3. Statistics The university has been conducting 5 national-level point-of-research projects financed by the Ministry of Education and Training and another 13 ministry-level projects in 1997. These projects have been going well as planned in the outline. The university accepted the general educational research project in the MD. The Ministry approved and awarded 3 excellent projects when the 30th anniversary of the university was celebrated. 4. Context Cantho University participates in research projects at all levels: • Contracts for research at state level: 17
  18. - Projects on development of varieties, in which the most important is to research, to breed, and to select varieties of paddy. From this project, many varieties accepted by Vietnamese Agricultural Ministry have been propagated in the MD. In addition, CTU is researching and preserving various collections on varieties of paddy, soya-bean and fruit trees. - Projects researching soils having problems, the most important being research on acid sulfate soils. Due to this project, CTU has trained teaching and research staff to a high professional knowledge in soil chemistry, soil mechanics, and GIS, and has also acquired modern synchronous equipment that is helpful in soil research. - Research on aquaculture, including the shrimp artemia project. - Group of research projects on development of crop systems. • Projects at level of ministry: - Many diverse projects concentrating mainly on the agricultural sector and rural development: agricultural economics in the countryside, crop protection, varieties, aquarium agricultural engineering, post harvest technology, and food processing. - Research for applying computer technology in management. - GIS. • Projects at level of University: Almost all faculties participate in research projects at university level in many fields: Agriculture, Technology, Medicine, Economic, Teaching methodology, Society, Culture, etc. Co-operation with provinces in the MD to research problems in production: crop protection, testing new varieties, soil improvement, and agricultural mechanization. CTU signs with local authorities in order to apply advanced technologies in production and social life in the poor countryside, guides the farmers to apply advance new technologies to erase hunger and reduce destitution. Various Institutes and Centers are carrying out research at the university. The Institute of Crop Systems Research and Development develops many suitable models of production and varieties with high yield and insect resistance that are propagated over a wide area of the region. The Renewable Energy Center is carrying out 4 projects to help women erase hunger and reduce destitution through applying the model of Fruit - Fish - Animal husbandry - Biogas. The Agricultural Faculty carries out a lot of research contracts with locals in the MD to organize training courses on cultivation engineering, crop protection, and transferring new varieties of tree and animal. Through the research programs of CTU, many research projects; applications and advanced science and technology are transferred into production with a high economical efficiency and a reality for farmers in the region. Many new products have resulted from research at CTU, due to the application of science to agricultural production. These include various methods to prevent insects that are now commonly used by farmers such as: Thyromin, Copper Zine, Copper B, and a compound that encourages the development of trees. 18
  19. • Cooperation projects with foreign Universities and Institutes: CTU is cooperating with many foreign Universities and Institutes in research projects, including soil improvement, nitrogen fixing, animal food, shrimp and fish raising, and artemia. • Organize workshops and important scientific conferences: - Efficiently utilize the acid sulfate soils in the MD. - Workshop on utilization of soils having problems in the MD and another regions. - Workshop on anaerobic fermentation technology in order to manage water resources and waste that impact social economics and ecology. - GIS technology in research and in the utilization of natural resources. - Workshop on development of education for the 21st century. - Workshop on summary of Heifer program. - Research and develop the field of aquaculture in the mainland and South East Asian Sea. - Workshop on the transfer of economical agricultural structure and rural development. In general, activities of research in CTU are diverse and there are good projects implemented in the conditions of the MD that contribute considerably toward rural development and increasing the standard of life of farmers. 5. Relation with social economic field CTU has a good relationship with the social economic field. Almost all foreign experts working at CTU have made the same remark. This is a main strong point of CTU. In the past, CTU closed the door for 2 – 3 weeks in order to send the students and staff to the countryside to help the farmers destroy insects to overcome big epidemics. Every year, CTU has an anti-illiteracy campaign in an out-of-the-way region. The students enthusiastically support this program. CTU also organized training courses in the field of management for young entrepreneurs in the MD. CTU has cooperated with non-governmental organizations in the credit program for poor women, a program for rural development, and a program for environmental hygiene in the countryside. These programs have been developed in the provinces of the MD: Can Tho, An Giang, Dong Thap, Tien Giang, Long An, Tra Vinh, Soc Trang, Bac Lieu, etc, in which staff from many faculties, Institutes and Centers participate. CTU usually organizes meetings with local authorities in the region in order to discuss co- operation in education. In the meeting on 3/7/1999, provincial leaders agreed that there be a periodical meeting between provincial leaders and CTU in order to discuss subjects concerning the training of manpower, relating education to social demands, and co- operation for scientific research in the whole region2. 2 Reports of Conference on "Training for Industrialization and Modernization in Mekong Delta”. July 3, 1999. 19
  20. CTU and its faculties have a good relationship with Directors of Agricultural Department; of Science, Technology and Environment Department, and the Medical Department in the MD. These relationships help CTU to know quickly real demands of society in order to create appropriate syllabus for training and determine the orientation for scientific research. CTU has a tight relationship with alumni who are working in most provinces, districts, and villages in the MD. A general assembly is organized periodically in order to make known scientific information and modern technologies, to present results and changes of CTU, and most importantly to allow students to contribute ideas in order to contribute for improving all activities of the university. In addition, CTU has a network of collaborators who are advanced farmers in almost all provinces. These collaborators take an important role to help the activities for encouraging agricultural and technology transfer from the university to the field. The students of CTU usually visit provinces having an exchange program for young people and provincial students. These activities help students get good conditions to contact with reality. 6. Technical infrastructure serving for training and research Based on data calculating property as of 01/1/2001, the total value of immobile property of CTU: 443,597,742,564 VN dong. The average value of wealth per 1 student: 29,573,182.84 VN dong/student (This data is calculated with 15,000 of students) The total area that CTU has managed and utilized: 87,6957 ha The total area of existing buildings: 101,377 m2 - Concrete building (level 3, level 2 and level 1) 62,246 m2 - Partial Concrete building (level 4) 39,131 m2 Table 1. Value of CTU's property No Types of property Value (VN dong) Ratio 1 Buildings-building materials 339,965,212,805 76.64% 2 Means of transportation 10,730,788,000 2.42% 3 Machines & Equipment 76,840,049,759 17.32% 4 Others 16,061,692,000 3.62% Total 443,597,742,564 100% 20
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