The MRC has no control over China’s dams nor those in Laos. China’s LMC framework seems divorced from the problems its dams are causing. So there seems every reason to hold a gloomy view of the Mekong’s future.
Many scientists argue that the world is on a worst-scenario track, on par or exceeding the target of a global 1.5 degree Celsius rise.
The planet is on fire. The heat is triggering natural wildfires across the globe, adding to the unstoppable destruction of forestland by governments and big businesses.
With the need to generate power from the upriver dams seemingly a greater priority than the livelihoods of people living in downstream communities – and with climate change an increasing concern – low water levels are set to be a recurring event in the coming years.
What we need now is expressways, which, with strong determination and swift actions, we can basically complete in around 10 or 15 years.
The Songkhram River, the last river with a slight semblance of natural flow and connectivity with the Mekong River, is threatened by one of the least transparent bureaucracies, the Royal Irrigation Department.
This year’s dearth of rain partly explains the sharp drop in water, dams built on the river in China and Laos must also take the blame for stopping water from flowing freely along the river.