Project Description

Technical support to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE)

Project Management Unit (PMU) for implementation of the Mekong Delta Study

Donor / Partner: AusAID / Mekong Water Resources Unit / Vietnam National Mekong Committee (VNMC) / Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment of Vietnam (MONRE)    |    Duration: 2011-2015   |    Location: Mekong Delta / Vietnam

About: The Mekong Delta is affected by upstream development – often in ways not fully understood and with uncertain impacts on natural, social and economic systems which sustain life and well being for millions of people in Vietnam.  With expanding plans for major developments on the mainstream and its tributaries, those impacts are likely to become much more serious.  Vietnam and its riparian neighbours do not have adequate scientific understanding for informed decision making on Mekong mainstream hydropower projects, especially on their downstream effects.

MONRE has commissioned a comprehensive study, involving new field work and technical assessments to develop knowledge to address analytical gaps, so that planning and development of the Mekong River Basin can be shaped by the best advice and evidence on the consequences of Mekong mainstream hydropower. ICEM has been commissioned by MONRE and AusAID to support the design and management of the Delta Study, monitoring its performance during implementation and providing expert technical support to ensure the project meets international best practice. Key outputs of the assignment to date include:

  • Approval by the Government of Vietnam of a detailed study terms of reference and methodology to quantify the economic, social and ecological impacts of Mekong River development on the Mekong Delta
  • Approval of the Delta Study design, including team composition and expertise requirements, detailed study budget; implementation scheduling, stakeholder engagement requirements and log frame incorporating the monitoring and evaluation conventions of major development partners
  • Development of the request for proposals (RFP) documentation, drafted and finalised in accordance with VNMC format and content guidelines
  • Presentation of ICEM research on the impacts of Mekong mainstream hydropower at the first Delta Roundtable meeting of donors, Government agencies and key technical organisations. A key focus of the research is the impacts on agriculture and fisheries and their effect on local livelihoods
The overall goal of the project is to safeguard the Mekong Delta, which is home to some 20 million people and more than 50% of the nation’s rice and fruit production and has been identified as one of the most vulnerable regions to these impact of mainstream hydropower. The Delta Study is a major technical assessment which will utilise the latest technologies and techniques to undertake new research to fill critical information gaps and consolidate existing understanding, providing the scientific evidence to inform the official position of the Government of Vietnam on Mekong mainstream hydropower.