The nine acres in southern Vietnam that double as rice paddy and shrimp pond for farmer Nguyen Thi Tam have become a wasteland. After the worst drought in 90 years, almost nothing grows.
Tam’s family had no income for two harvests because the rice crop failed and the shrimp died. They ran up $8,000 in debt -- more than twice her earnings in a typical year. To make ends meet, Tam plans to leave her village to work at a factory hundreds of miles away. Many others in the area already have fled, she said, including her daughter-in-law, who couldn’t endure the poverty.