Trinh Le Nguyen, head of Vietnam's People and Nature Reconciliation (PanNature), said at this point he expects all proposed dams to be built, regardless of their environmental effect. "It's like domino effect now," he said, noting that more than enough evidence of environmental damage has been presented. "I am afraid another consultation is just a waste of time for everyone, considering lessons from previous four," Nguyen said.
On 14 March 2017, the International Day of Action for Rivers, we, the Save the Mekong Coalition along with civil society and community partners from Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam, make this statement to express our gratitude to the Mekong River and the way of life she supports. The Mekong is our mother river, home to unique biodiversity and a lifeline for millions of people throughout the river basin. We recognize the efforts of Mekong communities who are working to protect and preserve the unique ecosystems and resources of the river for future generations.
Mekong countries’s chronic shortage of electricity which threatens to stymie economic growth, could be eased by pushing for acceleration of plans by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) for a regional power grid. Cross-border electricity swaps are growing as the 10-country bloc moves towards the goal of a single market by the end of 2015. And hydropower is among those plans. However, Damming the Mekong River can causes widespread controversy in South East Asia. Lower Sesan 2 dam on Mekong river in Cambodia is a typical example.
Large hydropower projects are often propagated as a “clean and green” source of electricity by international financial institutions, national governments and other actors. They greatly benefit from instruments meant to address climate change, including carbon credits under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), credits from the World Bank’s Climate Investment Funds, and special financial terms from export credit agencies and green bonds. The dam industry advocates for large hydropower projects to be funded by the Green Climate Fund, and many governments boost dams as a response to climate change through national initiatives. For example, at least twelve governments with major hydropower sectors have included an expansion of hydropower generation in their reports on Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs).
An Giang, Vietnam - More than 100 people gathered yesterday in An Giang, Vietnam for the historic Mekong People’s Forum: “Local Mekong People’s Voices: the message to Mekong governments on Mekong dams.” Participants included community members from the Tonle Sap lake, communities along the Mekong and 3S Rivers in Cambodia, from Northern and Northeastern Thailand’s communities along the Mekong and from An Giang, Dak Lak and Ca Mau, Vietnam. Most people have already experienced direct impacts from dams on the Mekong and its tributaries. The meeting marks the first time that communities from different Mekong countries have organized themselves to create a common platform from which to raise their concern regarding the impacts of existing and planned hydropower projects on the Mekong River.
On Thursday, October 29, 2015, stakeholders and experts on hydropower development and water resources in the Lower Mekong River Basin participated in a panel discussion entitled, “The New Mekong: Changes and Expectations.” Panelists included Mr. Trinh Le Nguyen (People and Nature Reconciliation), Mr. Nguyen Hong Toan (former Vietnam National Mekong Committee Secretary-General), Dr. Richard Cronin (The Stimson Center), Dr. Tran Viet Thai (Institute for Foreign Policy and Strategic Studies), and Mr. Jake Brunner (IUCN). A few key themes and topics were reiterated throughout the discussion: