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VIETNAM POVERTY AND ENVIRONMENT NEXUS STUDY Environment and poverty linkages in the Cau river basin Socio-Economic Development Centre, May 2005.

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Presentation on theme: "VIETNAM POVERTY AND ENVIRONMENT NEXUS STUDY Environment and poverty linkages in the Cau river basin Socio-Economic Development Centre, May 2005."— Presentation transcript:

1 VIETNAM POVERTY AND ENVIRONMENT NEXUS STUDY Environment and poverty linkages in the Cau river basin Socio-Economic Development Centre, May 2005

2 The main stream of Cau river has length of 288 km and basin area of 6030 km2. 68 streams have length of more than 10km. The sub- streams has total length of 1332 km and basin area of 3535 km2. Total water flow of the river reaches 4200 km3 in a year. The Cau river is water source for 3,5 mil. People in the basin and 5 mil. in the affected region. The Cau river is a location of traditional culture.

3 The Cau river basin comprises 23 districts and 5 cities and provincial towns belonging to six provinces: Bac Can: 3 districts, 1 town Thai Nguyen: 7 districts, 1 city, 1 town Vinh Phuc: 5 districts, 1 town Bac Giang: 3 districts Bac Ninh: 3 districts, 1 town Ha Noi : 2 districts Hai Duong province belongs to the Thai Binh river basin, but is affected directly by the Cau river water.

4 The related studies and documents Some studies on land use and environment of Bac Can, Thai Nguyen, Vinh Phuc. Environmental assessment in provinces of the Cau river basin. Strategies of socio-economic development of the Northeastern region and Master plans of provinces. 26/11/1997 Peoples Committee of 6 provinces proposed to design Master plan for environment protection and exploitation of the Cau river basin. 25/8/1998, PM approved this proposal. The master plan has been designed, discussed and revised several times. The latest version has been completed in 1/2005.

5 Master plan of the Cau river basin (1) Objectives: Long-term objectives (to the year 2030): To ensure sufficiency and balance of water in Cau river and its branches; to ensure that the river and its branches are not polluted, have good landscape, mild climate, safe and sustainable water constructions and flow systems. The Cau river basin should meet the standard of a prosperous and sustainable development, without re-violation. To create equality and reasonability of use of basins resources for all users. To combine benefits of resource use with responsibilities of river basins environment protection.

6 Master plan of the Cau river basin (2) The main programs and projects of high priorities (to 2015): Program 1: Mitigating and preventing environmental pollution resulting from production, service and business. Program 2: Preventing degradation of water sources, improving water balance and soil quality. Program 3: Improving the seriously polluted regions and river parts, the hot points of environmental pollution; gradually recovering Cau river. Program 4: Improving environment management of the river basin and increasing awareness and involving wide participation of population in environment protection.

7 Objectives of this study To improve the action plan of the Cau river environmental program by prioritising environment rehabilitation investments that have high positive impact in terms of poverty reduction. To provide information on poverty-environment linkages for incorporation into upcoming environmental awareness activities.

8 Research approach: Sustainable development

9 Research contents (1) 1. Reviewing the overall picture of socio- economic development and environment changes in the basin in last 10 years. (i) What are the special characteristics of development in the basin and the most actual problems the basin faces? (ii) What has been done for solving the problems? 2. Understanding poverty in the Cau river basin (upstream and downstream areas). (i) How is the poverty in the Cau River basin? (ii) How different is the poverty in upstream and downstream regions?

10 Research contents (2) 3. Analysing consequences of the environment degradation caused by human activities under the pressure of poverty. (i) How the natural resources and environment are affected by human activities? (ii) How the environment degradation impacts on living and poverty in the upstream and downstream regions? 4. Recommendations to investment policies and basin management.

11 Research methodology Literature and data review. Quantitative study: interview with semi-structured questionnaire to 600 households in upstream and downstream areas (100 hhs x 6 communes), including: 1 commune in Cho Don district, 2 communes in Cho Moi district, 1 commune in Que Vo district, 2 communes in Yen Phong district. Qualitative study: in-dept interview of district, commune officials, 40 hhs in 4 communes; group discussions of the poor, poor women, etc.

12 Sites of case study

13 Research output Report including 6 main parts: 1. Introduction. 2. Research methodology. 3. Overview of the socio-economic development and environment status in the Cau river basin. 4. Poverty in the Cau river basin. 5. Influences of poverty on environment and impacts of environmental degradation on populations life. 6. Research findings and recommendations.

14 Economic growth in the Cau river basin Economic profiles of provinces in the Cau river basin are diversified: Mineral exploitation and forestry concentrate in Bac Can and Thai Nguyen provinces Thai Nguyen is also a centre of metallurgy and machanical industries. A big number of craft villages is available in Bac Ninh and Bac Giang provinces. Hai Duong has cement factories, thermoelectric power plants, food and foodstuft processing industry. Ceramics, garment, etc. Agricultural production has high level of intencification in the whole basin, especially in downstream area.

15 Economic growth The seven provinces recorded a quicker economic growth rate (averaging 2.23 times) compared to that of the whole country in the period (1.72 times). Especially, Vinh Phuc and Bac Ninh provinces posted a growth rate quicker than the average rate of the seven provinces. Bac Can, Hai Duong and Ha Noi had a growth rate approximate to that of the seven provinces. Thai Nguyen and Bac Giang recorded a slower growth rate, but was also approximately equal to the general growth level of the country.

16 Growth of sectors Industries and construction contribute most to the growth rate. Those provinces that had a quick growth in this sector chalked up a higher growth rate. Vinh Phuc provinces growth rate is 11.8 times. Bac Can recorded a rather great growth rate times, while Ha Noi posted a little higher growth rate and Bac Ninhs growth rate is approximately equal to the growth rate of 7 provinces. Growth rate of Thai Nguyen, Bac Giang and Hai Duong was only equal to half of the average growth level of 7 provinces and equal to growth level of the whole country.

17 Economic structure The economic structure has changed dramatically. However agro-forestry production still dominates in economy of the basin. The rapid industrial growth rates of Vinh Phu and Bac Ninh have fundamentally changed the GDP structure. Agriculture and forestry, from being the pivotal sectors in the economy, accounting for over 50% of GDP, have now dropped to under 30%. In the meantime, industries and construction have soared to nearly 45% from under 20% of GDP.

18 GDP per capita Ranking provinces by per capita GDP, there are 3 groups: (1) Ha Noi (with 3rd rank among 64 provinces) has the highest income level (8,8 mill. VND/year); (2) Hai Duong, Vinh Phuc; Bac Ninh have a middle level of income (3,8-4 mill. VND/year); (3) Thai Nguyen, Bac Giang, Bac Can are poor provinces (2-3 mill. VND/year).

19 Poverty in provinces of the Cau river basin Thanks to the quick economic growth, the poverty reduction process has brought about satisfactory results. Bac Can is the poorest province. Thai Nguyen and Bac Giang ranked at 36 and 43 among 64 provinces by the increasing poverty. Bac Ninh, Hai Duong and Vinh Phuc ranked at 14, 23 and 28 (In accordance with MOLISA data, 2004).

20 Poverty in upstream and downsteam areas Poverty is different in downstream and upstream areas: Upstream is much poorer than downstream. Poverty in upstream is absolute poverty; population lacks of basic living neccesities. Poverty in downstream is caused by lack of agricultural land, lack of jobs, low income, shortage of sanitary living conditions. High population density and environment pollution are the main reasons.

21 Comparison of some indicators of Cho Moi and Yen Phong districts

22 Comparison of monthly per capita income in 6 surveyed communes

23 Comparison of poverty rates in 6 surveyed communes (poverty lines of 1$ PPP/person/day, equivalent to 160,000 VND/month and 2 $ PPP/ person/day, equivalent to 320,000 VND/month)

24 The poor Larger hhs size Less laborers, more children Lower education level Engaged more in agricultural, forestry activities, less in off-farm activities. These characteristics are sharper in upstream area. There is almost no cottage industry and handicrafts.

25 Poverty in upstream areas (1) A part of households and small communities need to be supported for self-installation of electricity. Most of water sources are not polluted, but there is water shortage in dry season and many households have to carry water home at a long distance. High percentage of temporary housing. Most of households doesnt have sanitary facilities (toilet, bathroom, animal stall coled to living area).

26 Poverty in upstream areas (2) Poor communal infrastructure: Only 60% of communes in Cho Moi district has a lower secondary school. 22% class rooms are temporary; 56% permanent (one-storey brick house); and 22% permanent (multi-storey house). 1 medical doctor / doctor assistant is servicing 1000 person in a area of 1680 hectares.

27 Poverty in upstream areas: Housing and water supply 2/3 semi-permanent and 1/3 temporary houses 1/3 dug well and 2/3 mountainous well, streams, river

28 Poverty in downstream areas High population density, few agricultural land under-employment low income poverty degradation of sanitary environment due to cottage industry.


30 Average per-capita income of quintiles and rich-poor gap

31 Environment in the Cau river basin Four major human activities that caused environmental changes in the Cau river basin: 1) Excessive exploitation of forests in upstream areaa; 2) Industrial pollution; 3) Agricultural production; and 4) Waste from daily life.

32 Forest in upstream areas Forest restores, but at a low speed. Restoration based mainly on natural process, with few intervention. Forest has low quality. Forest land has been allocated to households, but benefits is not strong enough to encourage hhs to take proper care and protect forest. No effective policies to ensure forest product market for farmers.

33 Types of forest in upstream areas Destroyed and restored forests Natural and planted forests

34 Mining industries in upstream areas Mining industries continue to pollute water sources, soil and destroy landscape: There are 35 mining and mineral processing enterprises in Bac Can, 100 mining ores in Thai Nguyen, many illegal mining groups. Solid waste released from coal mines in the Cau river basin is estimated at 1.5 million tones per year; from iron mines, 2.5 million tones per year; and from tint mines, 800,000 tones per year. Polluted water wasted from mining ores. Forest and landscape have been destroyed.

35 Environment degradation in downstream areas Pollution caused by large and medium enterprises is not effectively avoided. Craft villages develop fast and are important polluting factor: + There are more than 200 craft villages in the Cau river basin. + 3 major characteristics of craft vilages: (i) Spontanous development; (ii) Low level of technology; (iii) High instability due to weak competitiveness, small investment, no close links with consumption market and unqualified labour. Phong Khe - paper village and Tam Da - alcohol village

36 Impacts: serious pollution of water sources in craft villages

37 Negative impacts on health Diseases caused by environmental degradation are more popular in craft villages.

38 Negative impacts on health Sickness and sick days are higher among the poor

39 Negative impacts on health The poor in craft villages affected more by diseases related directly to polluting factors (eye, skin)

40 Negative impacts on health The poor in craft villages affected more by diseases related directly to polluting factors (eyes, skin)

41 Behavior and action of local authorities, businessmen and people against environmental pollution Conflict between poverty reduction, job creation and income generation for population in one side, and environment protection in other side. Local authorities aware of pollution, but they are bearing the pressure of high economic growth and job generation and income generation. Businessmen are bearing the pressure of competitiveness. They are not enforced yet to implement pollution preventing measures. Local people perceive the problems of environmental pollution as they are the very ones directly bearing the effects of contamination in working conditions and daily life. Yet, they must give in so as to earn their living.

42 Summary of research findings (1) Economic growth and environment: The rapid economic growth in the context of poor economy, huge population and obsolete technology in line with highly intensive exploitation of natural resources such as forest, water, and minerals has consequently resulted in resource depletion, serious pollution and erosion in the Cau river basin. (2) Poverty: The poverty is differently expressed in different regions in the basin. In upstream areas, less developing infrastructure and self-sufficient economy are cause for poverty. The population cannot access the essential needs (electricity, clean water, solid housings, healthcare service, and schools for children). In downstream areas, poverty is reflected in the shortage of cultivated land, lack of jobs and strong social gaps, scarcity of clean water and polluted living environment.

43 Summary of research findings (3) Impacts of poverty on environment: High demand for poverty reduction has led to intensive exploitation of all resources. In upstream areas, forest and minerals have been over-exploited. In mid- and downstream areas, industrial and agricultural production, especially production in craft villages polluted water sources, soil and air. (4) Reverse affects of environmental degradation to poverty: In upstream areas, people are in shortage of clean water, farming activities are affected by toxic residues in soil and water and many villages are damaged by natural calamity related to upstream deforestation. These impacts put more constraints on the naturally difficult and slow process of poverty reduction. In the middle and downstream areas, environmental pollution accelerates the poverty in some dimensions, for examples, meeting the needs of clean water and air, and sickness of population.

44 Summary of research findings (5) The poor and the environment: The poor involve in the process of environmental deterioration as the employees under the pressure of existence. Entrepreneurs and decision- makers of socio-economic development and environmental protection strategies and plans are those who are primarily responsible for natural resource and environment destruction. On the other hand, the poor are more affected as they cannot afford to protect themselves and to mitigate the impacts. (6) Insufficient awareness of sustainable development and integrated management of regional development: A common standpoint in the society is that the development is prone to economic growth and job creation, little attention is given to protection of natural resources and environment. Actions following this standpoint decrease sustainability of development in the Cau river basin.

45 Recommendation 1 (1) It is necessary to formulate sustainable development strategy and action programs (Agenda 21) in Cau river basin: The master plan on environment protection of the Cau river basin is still limited to the objectives of pollution treatment and environmental protection. It does not work out orientations and measures in the perspectives of economic development and poverty reduction in the basin, which are indeed the main cause for environmental degradation. If the economy of the provinces in the basin keeps growing as it has been for the past years, even with a larger scale and at a quicker pace as expected by the provinces, negative impacts on environment in general and on Cau river in particular will continue at a more severe level. It is to start the formulation of a new regional master plan in the light of sustainable development.

46 Recommendation 2 (2) Equitable use and development of natural resources in the upstream areas of Cau (2a) There need be particular measures to focus on enhancing forestation and forest protection in the upstream areas: + Concentration of resources of the national reforestation programs to some key areas, such as watersheet protective forest, special forest. + Arrangement for people to carry out forest protection and cultivation of agro-forestry combination with enough strong incentives. + Mobilization of investment in forest product processing industry and ensuring market for forestry. (2b) There should be a clearer strategic viewpoint of thrifty use of non- renewable resources, on that basis propose policies to limit, even totally ban exploitation of certain minerals whose exploitation and processing do not ensure the safety for environment, particularly small mines illegally exploited by private sector, or the overall and long-term economic efficiency is not high.

47 Recommendation 3 (3) Mitigation of polluting sources and pollution treatment in the middle- and down stream of the Cau river basin Activities of craft villages in the down stream areas can hardly be regulated by normal measures for large- and medium-scaled enterprises to build up some special appropriate measures in order to orientate the development of craft villages, pollution prevention and to accelerate poverty reduction process in rural areas, such as: Mobilize production units of industrial scale in handicraft villages into industrial zones that are planned at provincial level and with standard infrastructure even in environmental technology. Strengthen capacity of environment management at provincial level, including the section in-charge of environmental issues of rural industry. Assist consultancy agencies on environment and sustainable development that work in craft villages. Assist to perform pilot projects of rural industry development with community participation and in compliance with sustainable development principles.

48 Recommendation 4 (4) Poverty reduction policies in Cau river basin: In upstream areas: + Elimination of absolute poverty requires support policies and activities to meet the most basic needs of the poor, such as ensuring the food security, electricity, clean water, healthcare service, and education. + Assistance to the whole community to overcome the common poverty causes. + Measures of poverty reduction should be comprehensive and long-term. In downstream areas: + Creation of more employment opportunities. + Assistance to poverty reduction aims to recover the separate poor dimensions which are worsen by environmental deterioration like clean water supply, morbidity.

49 Thank you

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