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Zoning the suitability of the western Mekong Delta for paddy rice cultivation and aquaculture under current and future environmental conditions

Van, HD, Thi, XAT, Thi, VLL, Van, TT, Pham, NT, Phong, NT, Gagnon, AS, Pham, QB and Anh, DT Zoning the suitability of the western Mekong Delta for paddy rice cultivation and aquaculture under current and future environmental conditions. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment. ISSN 0167-6369 (Accepted)

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Abstract

Ca Mau and Kien Giang, the two provinces of the Mekong Delta bordering the Gulf of Thailand, are facing major environmental challenges affecting the agriculture and aquaculture sectors upon which many livelihoods in this region depend on. This study maps the suitability of these two provinces for paddy rice cultivation and shrimp farming according to soil characteristics and current and future environmental conditions for variables found to significantly influence the yield of those two sectors, i.e., the level of saltwater intrusion, water availability for rain-fed agriculture, and the length of the growing period. Future environmental conditions were simulated using the MIKE 11 hydrodynamic model forced by four hydrodynamic scenarios, each one representing different extents of saltwater intrusion during both the dry and rainy seasons, while also considering the availability of water resources for rain-fed agriculture. The suitability zoning was performed using a GIS-based Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) approach, resulting in the categorisation of the land according to four suitability levels for each sector. The analysis reveals that paddy rice cultivation will become more suitable to Kien Giang province while shrimp farming will be more suitable to Ca Mau province if the simulated future environmental conditions materialise. A suitability analysis is essential for optimal utilisation of the land. The approach presented in this study will inform the regional economic development master plan and provide guidance to other delta regions experiencing severe environmental changes and wishing to consider potential future climatic and sea level changes, and their associated impacts, in their land use planning.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Suitability zoning; GIS; saltwater intrusion; agriculture; shrimp farming; Mekong Delta
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
S Agriculture > S Agriculture (General)
S Agriculture > SH Aquaculture. Fisheries. Angling
Divisions: Biological & Environmental Sciences (new Sep 19)
Publisher: Springer Verlag (Germany)
Date Deposited: 08 Dec 2021 09:33
Last Modified: 08 Dec 2021 09:33
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/15896

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