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Climate Resilience Case Study in Can Tho, Vietnam

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Mthobisi  Nxumalo

Summary

During initial development of their Climate Resilience Action Plans, all three Vietnamese cities in the Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network (ACCCRN) —Da Nang, Can Tho, and Quy Nhon—arrived at similar conclusions about institutional vulnerability in their cities. The lack of effective coordination mechanisms across a variety of actors (government departments, scales of government from provincial to commune levels, and non-governmental actors) is a major barrier to building resilience. Note that non-governmental actors does not refer only to NGOs (in fact there are not many local NGOs in Vietnam) but also to businesses, private households, and other civil society organizations.

This links to a major theme from resilience thinking: the need for social learning and working together between stakeholders in the same system. Local partners identified an ongoing need for local government to undertake informed, climate responsive planning and decision making, and to implement the National Target Program on climate change (NTP).

With support from ACCCRN and the Can Tho People’s Committee, a Climate Change Coordination Office (CCCO) was established in Can Tho in 2011 (with similar offices established in Quy Nhon and Da Nang). The CCCO is now fully operational and responsible for developing and coordinating all climate change adaptation and mitigation projects in the city in collaboration with external agencies and local stakeholders. Under the authority of the city’s Climate Change Steering Committee (CCSC), the office plays a variety of roles and uses a variety of mechanisms for promoting better coordination, collaboration, planning and investment for Climate Change.

Under its mandate from CCSC and a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation, the CCCO is authorized to:

  • develop official climate change action plans under the central government’s National Program to Respond to Climate Change;
  • oversee implementation of ACCCRN City Resilience Action Plan;
  • coordinate climate change resilience analysis for relevant city/provincial departments;
  • develop a database to facilitate relevant data access across city agencies;
  • provide guidance to Socio-Economic Development Planning and urban master planning at the city level;
  • strengthen capacities and participation of vulnerable communities in climate resilience planning and decision-making;
  • build awareness of climate challenges and responses among city government and enhance capacity of key departmental staff;
  • engage relevant local departments in assessing climate vulnerabilities and responses through targeted studies;
  • develop indicators in collaboration with relevant departments and agencies to monitor city resilience; and
  • promote ongoing dialogue among city stakeholders through shared learning dialogues.

For details on the specifics of these activities, please read the documents linked below.

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