By Kyle Horner

The vulnerability of rice farms to changing climate is the focus of a research project in Vietnam’s Mekong Delta (link) .   Australian researchers, including RSES Ph.D. candidate Kyle Horner, recently travelled to Can Tho University to deliver a workshop for Vietnamese agricultural research scientists and technicians investigating the Mekong Delta.

Financed by a grant from Australia’s Crawford Fund, the four-day workshop gave attendees an intensive review of techniques for monitoring and sampling soil, surface water, soil water, and groundwater.

Classroom sessions emphasised techniques essential for characterizing the acid sulphate soils of the Mekong Delta.   In-field techniques for analysing redox-sensitive soil and water properties were discussed extensively, as were quality assurance and quality control protocols for ensuring sample integrity.

The workshop balanced theory and practice, with field sessions giving researchers first-hand experience collecting and logging soil cores, and installing and sampling piezometers and soil moisture peepers.

With these skills, Vietnamese researchers will be able to take the lead in assessing the viabililty of current agricultural practices in the Mekong Delta, as well as elsewhere in the region.

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