Title : Hydropower Plant Development, Forest Recompensing and Water Governance in Central Highlands of Viet Nam
By 2016 about 98% of households in rural area of Viet Nam were electrified. The total of power system production of the country reached 159.45 billion kWh in 2016, of which contribution from hydropower plants occupy more than 30%. So far, Viet Nam planned to convert about 50,000 ha of forestland to hydropower plant construction. But in reality, the recompensing forest plantation after dam construction has not been successfully implemented due to lack of participation from local communities and inaccurate planning process.
Central Highlands is one of largest natural forest area left in the country. But deforestation has taken place seriously lead to degradation of forest, biodiversity lost, soil erosion and severe drought in last two decades. The total of recompensing forest plantation in Central Highlands is about 20,000ha (including hydropower plant and other purposes). But by 2016 only 5000ha forest planted equivalent to 20% of total area has to be planted. The implementation process reflected low level of participation from stakeholders, especially local people from planning to monitoring and evaluation of the project. The interaction from policy level, local authorities, civil society, and communities are very weak in this region.
This paper analyzed related forest and watershed management policies and their implementation on the ground. It also assessed the roles of civil society in water governance in Central Highlands. The policy recommendations to contribute to improvement of natural resources governance in the country are derived from this analysis as well as multi-stakeholder dialogues.