Letters from the Mekong – Stimson Center

This issue brief, the fifth in Stimson’s Letters from the Mekong series – Toward a Sustainable Water-Energy-Food Future in Cambodia
Jun 11, 2017  Letters from the Mekong: Mekong Power Shift – Emerging Trends in the GMS Power Sector
Oct 12, 2016  This issue brief—the third in Stimson’s “Letters from the Mekong”. A CALL FOR STRATEGIC,
Oct 9, 2015  This issue brief – the second in Stimson’s “Letters from the Mekong“. TIME FOR A NEW NARRATIVE ON MEKONG HYDROPOWER


No more dams, float solar panels instead: experts

By Richard Cronin   July 30, 2018 | 08:07 am GMT+7

After studying alternatives to mitigate the impacts of pending dam projects in Laos and Cambodia, experts say, just say NO.

The catastrophic collapse of a dam during unusually heavy rain on July 24 in Laos’ southern Attapeu Province has greatly enhanced the importance of two separate reports by the California-based National Heritage Institution (NHI) on two massive dam projects planned by Laos and Cambodia that would fatally degrade the vital core of the world’s most productive riverine ecosystems and its agriculturally rich Delta.

One report, in fact, specifically addresses the threat posed by plans to construct nearly a dozen massive hydropower dams on the the Xe Kong, the very river system bore the brunt of the upstream dam collapse. Within a couple of days of the dam collapse one of its tributaries the Xe Kong swelled to just short of the 11.5 meters “alarm” level at a measuring station some 287 kilometers downstream in Cambodia.  Some 3,000 people narrowly escaped the rushing mass of water, while some 27 are said to be dead and hundreds more are missing.

Both studies were led by Gregory Thomas, an American with extensive experience studying fisheries and sediment issues on tributary river dams in Vietnam and Laos, and more than a dozen international and regional co-authors and contributors.

The first report, The NHI’s Sambor Alternatives Assessment, was prepared under a 2014 Memorandum of Understanding with the Cambodia Ministry of Mines and Energy and submitted in December 2017.

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Powering Up: Mekong Basin Connect

stimson_logo_blue 3  Announcement

Powering Up: Mekong Basin Connect

Countries in the Mekong Basin need a strategic, basin-wide approach to efficiently develop the basin’s water and energy resources in ways that protect the natural productivity of the river system. Otherwise, poorly coordinated hydropower planning on the Mekong mainstream and its tributaries will lead this resource rich region into a water and food security crisis.

In 2017, Stimson’s Energy, Water, and Sustainability program launched the Mekong Basin Connect Initiative, led by the Stimson Center, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), UC Berkeley’s Energy Resources Group, and The Nature Conservancy, to identify and promote new and pathways to achieve this ambitious goal. Click on the image below to learn more about Mekong Basin Connect.

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Letters from the Mekong: Mekong Power Shift – Emerging Trends in the GMS Power Sector


This issue brief, the fourth in Stimson’s “Letters from the Mekong” series, explores the shifting terrain for power sector development in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS), analyzing hydropower within the context of a broader range of emerging factors and opportunities that could lead to a transformation in the way that Mekong countries approach energy security, regional electricity trade, and sustainable development. This transition, if effectively implemented, could lead to substantive economic gains and significantly reduce ecological, socioeconomic, and political risks in the Mekong Basin. Tiếp tục đọc “Letters from the Mekong: Mekong Power Shift – Emerging Trends in the GMS Power Sector”