River deltas are fertile and highly populated landscapes, home to some 360 million people worldwide. Due to changes in river flow, increasing population pressure and use of natural resources and the manifold impacts of climate change, they are also at risk —a reality that deeply effects the lives of their inhabitants, including rice and shrimp farmers in Vietnam’s Mekong and Red River Deltas. DeltAdapt is a large-scale research project analysing the environmental and social changes occurring to delta ecosystems, with the aim of helping farmers adapt and maintain their livelihoods.
The project explores how the Mekong and Red River Deltas are adapting to salinity intrusion — particularly, how cropping patterns are shifting between paddy rice, rice-shrimp farming, and saline aquaculture. This adaptation to increasing salt water levels has immense consequences for soil quality, biodiversity, and livelihoods. DeltAdapt will also develop options that help farmers minimise the removal of topsoil and reverse soil fertility loss.
Funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), this project responds to the central aims of the German National Research Strategy BioEconomy 203. It delivers practice-oriented information to enable the sustainable shaping of agricultural landscapes of coastal agro-ecosystems. The research approach and the implementation of the results are based on the dual involvement of German and Vietnamese scientists and project stakeholders.