Vietnamese plea to Thailand: Don’t divert the Mekong

Thailand Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha voiced plans to use water from the Mekong and Salween rivers to fill dams that have run low because of drought and poor water management. But the PM’s remarks have caused shockwaves in the Mekong Delta, which would be directly affected if such a project was to go ahead.

China’s demand for aluminium is poisoning Southeast Asia

Soaring Chinese demand for natural resources is wreaking environmental havoc throughout Southeast Asia. Driven by its internal needs to provide breakneck rates of job creation and economic growth, China’s developmental model has repeatedly abused the fickle regulatory environment of its neighbors to drive its thirst for commodities. It has made it clear that, whoever can provide, it will buy. At the behest of Chinese companies, countries such as Vietnam and Malaysia have rolled out the red carpet, with little regard for their fragile ecosystems.

Offshore area to be busiest in Southeast Asia: MOGE

The winners of the 2013 offshore round are preparing for large energy exploration programs this year, as the process of signing production sharing contracts is now finished. While falling energy prices may slow the overall pace of exploration in Myanmar, there is expected to be a burst of exploration on the 20 newly-awarded offshore blocks.

Dam EIAs enable “river grabbing”

Water and river grabbing refers to situations where powerful actors such as developers and governments are able to take control of, or reallocate to their own benefits – including decision-making power – the use of rivers and water resources.

Mekong nations to set up EIA working group

Government officials and civil society representatives from across the Mekong region have agreed to establish a working group to develop a regional public participation guideline for Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) recently in Hanoi, Vietnam.