Mobilizing science for climate change, agriculture and food security in Vietnam

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Media helps amplify awareness and support for climate change related issues and initiatives; thus, CCAFS-SEA continue to conduct learning and engagement activities for and with them. 

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), in partnership with the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security Regional Program for Southeast Asia (CCAFS-SEA) and Redraw the Line, will conduct a media seminar-workshop on climate change for Vietnamese journalists on 17-18 November 2014 in Hanoi.

40 senior agriculture, environment and science journalists from the North, Central and South will participate in this event which, primarily aims to link science-based knowledge and innovations with national action on climate change, agriculture and food security in Vietnam. MARD Vice Minister Dr. Le Quoc Doanh will deliver the opening remarks.

More specifically, the two-day seminar-workshop aims to enable journalists to articulate major issues and concerns on climate change, agriculture and food security in Vietnam. It will also improve the capacities of participants in science-based reporting and the communication of issues on climate change, agriculture and food security; help them  regularly publish, broadcast and upload stories on climate change, agriculture and food security in the Vietnamese media; and initiate a vibrant public – private climate change communication and social mobilization network in the country.

In this event, science-based innovations on climate change, agriculture and food security will be shared by scientists from CGIAR’s international agricultural research Centers and MARD. Likewise, techniques in communicating climate change in the context of agriculture and food security will be shared by leading communication experts in Vietnam and Southeast Asia.

A field tour  will also be done at the Northern Mountainous Agriculture and Forestry Institute (NOMAFSI), an agency under the MARD. Intensive interactions among journalists and scientists will be done to come up with story ideas for the media.  

“The seminar-workshop responds to the expressed need of journalists and media practitioners to have an accurate, science-based understanding of climate change, agriculture and food security issues in Vietnam,” says Dr. Leocadio Sebastian, Hanoi-based Regional Program Leader of CCAFS in Southeast Asia. 

Climate change poses a serious threat to the economic growth of Vietnam. It is one of the Southeast Asian countries that is hardest hit by global warming and sea level rise. The annual average temperature of Vietnam has increased about 7 degrees Centigrade in the last 50 years. During this time, sea level has also risen to about 20 centimeters.

Natural disasters are causing 1.5 percent economic losses of Vietnam’s gross domestic product (GDP) annually, and more than 10 percent of this is estimated to be lost by 2100 due to climate change. This will affect more than 12% of agricultural land and  about 25 percent of the population. With 2008 as the base year, rice production in Vietnam will decline by 8 percent in 2030 and 15 percent in 2050.