Sustainable Rural Infrastructure and Watershed Management: Flood and drought risk assessment to ensure resilience to climate change
In May 2017, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) approved the concept paper of the Sustainable Rural Infrastructure and Watershed Management Sector Project in Lao PDR. This project aims to increase the profitability of the agriculture, natural resources and rural development sectors in order to achieve sustainable and inclusive rural development. The anticipated outcome of the project is enhanced and sustainable market oriented agricultural production and natural resources management in selected watersheds. This will be achieved through three outputs: (i) productive rural infrastructure (PRI) upgraded to be climate resilient, efficient, and sustainable; (ii) land use management within the PRI scheme watersheds improved; and (iii) institutional arrangements and capacity for good agriculture practices and sustainable watershed management improved. The project will work in the northern provinces, including the priority provinces of Huaphanh, Xiengkhouang, Luang Phrabang, and Vientiane provinces, with the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF) as the executing agency. IWMI will conduct a flood and drought risk assessment in watersheds where Productive Rural Infrastructures (PRIs) are at risk. The results of the assessment will be used to (i) design PRI schemes in these watersheds, so that investments to repair, upgrade, and modernize them can be made in a way that can withstand climate change impacts, including bioengineering approaches; (ii) identify sustainable land use management and watershed management options; and (iii) provide input to institutional strengthening and capacity for good agriculture practices and sustainable watershed management to improve agricultural production and water productivity, while reducing environmental degradation.