||Principal issues identified in the initial environmental examination were the scale of land acquisition and displacement of affected households for main canal infrastructure, and the need to relocate about 157 graves. Inter-commune and district roads will be severed, requiring new bridges, and some 46 ha of forest land will cleared and an equivalent area of forest will be established within the vicinity. During construction, air and water pollution, soil erosion, and traffic congestion will need to be managed through strict control of construction contracts; the health and safety of construction workers and the community must also be addressed. Post-construction impacts include potential increases in agricultural waste, fertilizer, and pesticide residues. The Cua Dat reservoir will implement operational rules to ensure that minimum water flows are maintained to address salinity concerns within the river delta while ensuring adequate irrigation water supplies. An environmental management plan has been prepared for the NCSMRIS investment program to mitigate and monitor these potential impacts.
The government has prepared (i) a resettlement framework for the entire NCSMRIS investment, (ii) a resettlement plan for the government-financed main canal, and (iii) a resettlement plan for the north and south main canal construction, which have been approved by government, endorsed by ADB and posted on the ADB website. Loan-financed consultants will prepare resettlement plans for the remaining works (such as lower-order canals) in accordance with the resettlement framework upon completion of detailed designs. ADB will finance resettlement allowances for the project, and the government has agreed to finance all remaining land acquisition and resettlement costs. District-level resettlement units have been established by the provincial people's committee to undertake resettlement work, as described in the resettlement framework. The project will engage an independent resettlement monitor. A due diligence study of resettlement activities on the main canal (initiated in December 2010) has been prepared and the government has agreed with the corrective action plan.
Under the NCSMRIS investment program, a total of approximately 5,218 households will be affected as a result of land acquisition or resettlement associated with construction of the main, north main, south main, and lower-order canals, based on social surveys and initial
engineering designs. Of these, 1,343 households are considered vulnerable (about 381 are headed by women), and 3,043 households are considered severely affected, losing more than 10% of their total landholding, and 439 are ethnic minority households.
Within the project area (phase 2 of the NCSMRIS investment program), approximately 3,856 households will be affected, including 945 vulnerable and 2,426 severely affected households.
||The project directly and indirectly affects the customary rights of use, access to land and natural resources, and livelihood systems of ethnic people in project communes. Of the 119,495 households benefited by the project, 11,448 households comprise Thai and Muong ethnic minorities. There is broad ethnic minority community support for the project, as documented in meetings with communities during project preparation. An indigenous peoples plan (locally termed an ethnic peoples development plan) has been prepared covering the entire NCSMRIS investment program to address ethnic minority impacts of the investments.