By Claire Boobbyer
Don Sahong, Champasak, Laos, September 19, 2015
The fate of the last surviving Irrawaddy river dolphins on the Laos-Cambodian border hangs in the balance after a Laos government official was reported as saying this week that construction of the dam would begin by the end of the year.
The 256-MW Don Sahong hydropower project, given the go-ahead in July by the Laos government, could alter the course of the lower Mekong River. Just five river dolphins live in deep-water pools on the Laos-Cambodian border, south of the serene 4,000 Islands, an area in southern Laos popular with travellers who take dolphin-spotting tours. A further 80 of the grey mammals live in the Cambodian section of the river.
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