The Lower Sesan II dam in Cambodia’s Stung Treng province has resulted in inundation of seasonal wetlands, relocation and the fragmentation of local communities. Previously self-sufficient communities are struggling as they become low-income wage labor in distant cities but face mounting debts, economic insecurity, homesickness, and mental stress. Community leaders are striving to invest in education for local youth to gain a better future.
Ethnic Danu people in Myanmar’s Shan State are trying to raise awareness in their community about the health and environmental impacts of the mining operations in their area. They are trying to reach out to the government as well as environmental and other groups in Shan State and beyond to help protect the health, livelihoods, farmlands and the safety of the ethnic Danu people.
Dams are touted as bringing “development”. But in Vietnam, they often end up bringing hardship and frustration for local people especially in mountain areas. In many cases, dams are built without the full participation of affected communities, and fail to offer fair compensation or adequate resettlement programs.
If built, the Sambo dam will displace more than 20,000 people, affect livelihoods of many thousands more, and disrupt fish migrations including critical deep pool fish habitats. It is time to rethink hydropower as an energy generation source. Why do we need dams that destroy people’s lives and rivers when there are cleaner and safer renewable energy options for Cambodia?
One of the greatest impacts of dam construction in the Mekong Basin is on inland fisheries and the livelihoods of small-scale fishers. A fisher in the Mekong Delta talks about the plight of inland fishing livelihoods in An Phu district, An Giang province in Vietnam.
Since 2016, farmers in Cambodia’s Battambang province have been facing severe drought that has resulted in decline in rice production, deaths of livestock, and loss of livelihoods. The author explores whether building more reservoirs is a solution to help farmers cope with the impact of droughts that are recurring with increasing frequency in Cambodia and the Mekong Region.
In recent decades the Mekong region has witnessed a rapid development of large-scale hydropower projects in the name of energy security, economic growth and sustainable development. Yet do these justifications outweigh the social and environmental costs, and are these justifications even genuine?
Rice farmers in north Thailand’s Phayao are facing rain deficits and crop diseases threatening their farming culture and life.
Climate change especially drought are threatening the rice production and fishery in Cambodia. Sao Phal Niseiy explains that farmers and fishers can cope through efforts at raising awareness, promoting capacity building and diversified farming systems to ensure food security.
The Mekong Delta Study initiated by Government of Vietnam (2013-2015) aimed to look at the impacts of Mekong mainstream hydropower on Vietnam’s Mekong Delta that is the rice and fruit production centre for Vietnam. But the weak study process ignored local people’s concerns and has failed to protect the Mekong Delta and its communities.