Category: Mekong Utility Watch

What rivers with rights mean for the Mekong

What does the decision to recognize the Ganges and the Yamuna rivers as living entities mean for the construction of the controversial Xayaburi and Don Sahong dams on the Mekong River?

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An alternate past/future for Mekong River dams under the UN Watercourses Convention

This three-part article by international water law consultant Rémy Kinna looks at dams in the Mekong. Kinna examines the existing legal framework for regulating dam development in the region and how its legal gaps and ambiguities have led to ongoing disputes (particularly in regard to the Xayaburi Dam in Laos), and how to improve dispute resolution and strengthen water governance across the Mekong River mainstream and its tributaries under the UN Watercourses Convention.

Mekong Delta loses half of silt to upstream dams: scientists

A soft shield of silt that took over 6,000 years to form and which protects the ‘rice bowl’ of Vietnam against intrusion from seawater, erosion and declining groundwater levels has been seriously stripped by Chinese dams on the Mekong River, say experts. Half of the river’s essential sediment is now trapped upstream and the delta may be in jeopardy of disappearing altogether. Thanh Nien News reports.

The myth of sustainable hydropower

2016 will be a decisive year for hydropower projects on the mainstream Mekong. Southeast-Asia based journalist, Tom Fawthrop, looks at the notion of ‘nice dams’ that supposedly don’t inflict too much damage on their surrounding environments and their opposite reality: the hidden costs of hydropower and the irreversible destruction of unique ecosystems.

Silence of the dammed

Among the conflicting opinions over hydroelectric development of the Mekong River Basin, one voice seems to be missing, writes longtime development worker and researcher JeeRung: the local communities of Laos directly affected. She breaks down why.

China’s Lacang River dams – impacts already ‘extensive’

Already, newly completed cascade dams along China’s Lancang River are altering the river’s hydrological regime and sediment flow, blocking fish migration and posing a risk to food security and livelihoods. As more cascade dams roll out along the Lancang, International Rivers offers a better understanding through their research of the environmental impacts of current development and what further impacts can be expected as more projects come online.

Thai lawsuit filed to block Laotian dam on Mekong

(August 13, 2012) Thai opponents of the proposed Xayaburi dam for the Mekong River in Laos are taking their case to court. A group of Thai villages have filed a lawsuit to block a state-run company from buying electricity generated by the dam in a bid to halt the project, opposed by downstream nations, altogether and set a precedent for future cross-border projects.