Mekong communities tell of hardship from hydropower dams

The Cambodia Daily

About 200 people from Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia affected by hydropower dam projects on the Mekong River and its tributaries gathered in Phnom Penh on Monday to share their experiences of how their lives have been adversely affected since the dams were constructed.

Speaking at an event organized by NGO Forum, representatives from the three countries spoke out about their experiences with hydropower development throughout the Mekong Region.

The information was of particular interest to those Cambodians in attendance, as villagers living in Stung Treng province are currently preparing to be evicted to make way for the reservoir of a massive 400 MW dam to be built by Cambodian conglomerate Royal Group in partnership with China’s Hydrolancang International Energy company.

Somsak Tiyata, a coordinator of the Mekong-Lanna network, an environmental group based in Thailand’s northern Chiang Rai province, said that the Chinese dams upstream on the Mekong have severely reduced the amount of vegetation and fish that Thais rely on for food.

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