Communities developing opportunities around Soc Trang Wind Farm
Communities surrounding one of Vietnam’s largest offshore wind developments have been identifying how it can help to support and bring new resilience to their ways of life.
Local indigenous people and fishermen discussed some of the social and economic benefits that could flow from the 1,400 MW Phu Cuong Soc Trang project during a series of meetings with Mainstream representatives.
Construction on the first 200 MW of the wind farm’s projected generating capacity is expected to begin later this year after its inclusion in the country’s Power Development Plan last June.
The week-long engagement involved consultations with 172 households from Vinh Chau town and the surrounding area, which lies 180km southwest of Ho Chi Minh City on the Mekong River Delta coastline.
Members of the local ethnic minority populations were also consulted in line with development standards set out by the International Finance Corporation, part of the World Bank Group.
Discussions with fishermen focused on potential areas of co-operation, including employment and re-training opportunities that the project could support.
Measures to protect the language and culture of the indigenous Khmer and Hoa people will also feature in the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment report now being drawn by consultants ChiaSe, the Center of Help for Indigenous Value Promotion and Sustainable Environment.
Bernard Casey, Mainstream’s Development Director in Vietnam, explained that its recommendations will inform a mitigation plan.
He said: "The local fishing and indigenous communities will be our nearest neighbours. We are committed to sustainable development and to ensuring that the project will bring opportunities to them. Our goal is to be a good neighbour and not to adversely impact fishing livelihoods."
- The 1,400 MW Phu Cuong Soc Trang Offshore Wind Farm is being developed as a joint venture between Mainstream and its local partner, the Phu Cuong Group, in two phases, with construction of the 200 MW Phase 1 (A) expected to begin later this year. Once fully completed, the project will be one of the largest offshore wind farms in South East Asia, powering more than 995,000 homes and avoiding around 1,220,000 tCO2e each year.