Environmental Change and Forced Migration Scenarios: Vietnam Case Study Reports Linkages between Flooding, Migration and Resettlement

Timeframe: October 2007 – December 2007

Location: Mekong Delta region of Viet Nam

IOM Viet Nam together with the United Nations University Institute for Environment and Human Security carried out research on the Environmental Change and Forced Migration Scenarios (EACH-FOR) in Viet Nam, which explored linkages between flooding, migration and resettlement. This was part of a European Commission funded research project, which aimed to provide a greater understanding of the role of environmental degradation and change in causing forced migration and its related societal consequences. Cyclical flooding in the Mekong Delta is an annual event and essential to the livelihoods of those people living in the region. The study highlighted that natural disasters, in combination with rapid socio-economic development and threats posed by climate change, places Viet Nam’s in a precarious position. In the face of environmental stress, people in the Mekong Delta may likely decide to migrate (mainly seasonal and internally), particularly in light of rapid economic changes that will create stronger pull factors towards urban environments. This study also highlighted the associated challenges with this migration, including the increasing vulnerability of the people during the resettlement process.