Project Description

Resource Kit for Building Resilience and Sustainability in Mekong Towns

Donor: Asian Development Bank (ADB)     |    Duration: 2013-2014   |    Location: Cambodia, Lao PDR and Vietnam

About:Natural systems are the essential foundation for Mekong town development and rehabilitation. The Resource Kit for Building Resilience and Sustainability in Mekong Towns is a seven-volume kit that promotes the maintenance and use of natural systems as a key strategy for building sustainability and resilience in urban areas.

Prepared for the Asian Development Bank by ICEM as part of the award-winning TA 8186, the resource kit is built on the experience and expertise of a wide variety of professionals from the Mekong region and abroad. Over the course of two years, workshops and field visits brought together scientists, planners, and government officials in three towns in the GMS—Battambang, Cambodia; Dong Ha, Vietnam; and Kaysone Pomvihane, Lao PDR—to conduct vulnerability assessments and design green infrastructure solutions for some of the most complex infrastructure issues they face. The tools they used and the green infrastructure techniques they included in their designs make up the bulk of this kit, as do the stories of each town’s experience.

Now, practitioners in the GMS can learn directly from the experiences of these three towns. Each volume has been translated into the national language of each participating country, opening the volumes up to speakers of Khmer, Vietnamese, and Lao.

Volume 1: Nature Based Solutions for Resilient and Sustainable Mekong Towns

This volume sets out the main principles governing the application of green infrastructure concepts, approaches and measures as the foundation for building resilience and sustainability in Mekong towns. Also, it summarises some of the main lessons which the climate change core groups from the three towns have learned during this application of vulnerability assessment and adaptation planning methods to their town master plan and specific infrastructure systems.

Volume 2: Green Infrastructure for Resilient Mekong Towns

The Green Infrastructure volume introduces more than twenty nature-based solutions of special relevance to Mekong towns. They are grouped into four categories: Water and Flood Management, Slope Stabilisation, Pollution Management, and Heat, Energy, and Green House Gas Emissions Management.

Each technique contains a brief description of its application, a list of benefits, and diagrams to help guide users in implementation. Green infrastructure solutions often complement each other, and are intended to be implemented as part of integrated packages or connected systems across the urban landscape. Matrices in Volume 2 help users combine different techniques and see which applications are best applied together for optimum benefits.

Volume 3: Urban Planning for Building Resilient Mekong Towns

This volume describes the urban planning and management framework needed to facilitate and guide the uptake of green infrastructure. It gives special attention to the role of town master planning and the use of zoning schemes and associated safeguards in promoting development that embraces nature-based approaches for sustainability and resilience.

Volume 4: Vulnerability Assessment and Adaptation Planning Guide for Building Resilient Mekong Towns

The vulnerability assessment and adaptation guide lays out a step-by-step process for assessing climate change impacts and vulnerabilities and for preparing and implementing adaptation plans. The guide includes templates and matrices that can be used to record data, create plans, and assist with prioritising adaptation measures.

Templates and matrices justify and add legitimacy to the adaptation plans as an important fixture in local government budget disbursements.

Volumes 5 to 7: Case Studies in Building Urban Resilience in Battambang, Dong Ha and Kaysone Phomvihane

Each town story includes a baseline assessment of the town as a whole and steps taken to improve the integration of climate change into town-wide planning. The volumes provide detailed descriptions of the step-by-step vulnerability assessment and adaptation planning processes applied by the core groups for two to three strategic infrastructure systems and areas in their town. Detailed town specific lessons learned from this work are included at the end of each volume.