Participatory development of scaling plan as a part of low emission roadmap in rice production of Mekong River Delta.
Rice production in Vietnam emits approximately 13% of total GHGs of the country. It is a significant source of methane, but also fine-particulate matter emission. The International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) has been working in Vietnam for many years, with support from national partners, to conduct research aimed at reducing the environmental impact of rice production. The alternate wetting and drying (AWD) technology, and sustainable straw management options have been introduced by IRRI as low-emission technologies (LET) for the rice sector. As the result of IRRI's contribution, the government of Vietnam has prioritized AWD as a key option in Vietnam's Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC). The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) also developed a circular on collecting and processing crop residues, including rice straw. In some provinces, both, AWD and low-emission straw management practices have gradually been adopted by rice farmers but the adoption rate is still low. The constraints that obstruct adoption of LET need to be tackled with close participation of local stakeholders. The participatory approach in studies on adoption has been a focus of IRRI. Regarding low emission technologies, IRRI conducted several stakeholder analyses to define the main factors that influence farmer adoption. A participatory approach is also used to identify problems and solutions in low emissions technologies implementation taking into consideration the local conditions. This paper presents an engagement study that focuses on a provincial low emission roadmap in rice production. Results obtained in the study of An Giang province show that AWD adoption is strongly influenced by biophysical conditions and technical guidance, while adoption of environmentally friendly straw management is mainly driven by market, rainfall distribution and quality of transportation network. In An Giang's districts, adoption of LET can be improved in the next 5-year plan. The implementation targets and required collective actions are in relation to improvement of infrastructure, policy and communication, and vary from district to district. With engagement of local stakeholders, this workshop has identified challenges for the implementation of LET and highlighted the locally proposed solutions as the way to overcome current constraints and connect the last mile from research to field implementation. This paper provides insights of LET adoption and implementation potential in An Giang, which also have implications for LET scaling in other provinces in the Mekong River Delta.