Vice President of Vietnam meets GWI representatives
The Vice President of Vietnam, Her Excellency Dang Thi Ngoc Thinh, along with the Ambassador of Vietnam in Australia, His Excellency Ngo Huong Nam, visited UNSW Sydney and met with staff from the Climate Change Research Centre, the School of Public Health and Community Medicine and the Global Water Institute to discuss climate change and its impact on public health and water security.
Professor Stephen Sherwood of the Climate Change Research Centre stated that the effects of climate change will be most acute in tropical countries like Vietnam. Rising temperatures are projected to increase the incidence of heat stroke and respiratory disease, particularly amongst the young and the elderly, while projections for more frequent and extreme conditions of droughts and flood will stress existing water infrastructure, impact aquaculture and increase tensions over water sharing and allocation of surface waters amongst the six nations that share the Mekong river.
The visit was an opportunity to discuss a suite of water related projects in Vietnam by GWI associates, including Jes Sammut from the Faculty of Science, who is working on improving the sustainability of rice-shrimp farming systems in the Mekong Delta; Fluer Johns from the Faculty of Law, who, with her coauthors, has published a narrative on the socio-legal approach to river basin development in the Mekong; and Kim Spurway and Susan Schmeidl of the Faculty of Arts and Social Science, who recently evaluated a water utility twinning program between Australian and Vietnamese water utilities.
These projects are important component of climate change adaptation and are part of an ongoing commitment to multidisciplinary projects in Vietnam and the region.