Geopolitics are not accounting for local communities

Geopolitics are not accounting for local communities

Originally published in Centre on Asia and Globalisation Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy’s newsletter Guest Column by Pianporn Deetes is Regional Campaigns Director, Southeast Asia Program at International Rivers Whatever the geopolitics of hydropower brings to the Mekong River, the people living alongside it must have a greater say in its future development….

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Court dismissal of Xayaburi dam lawsuit highlights the need to strengthen accountability of cross-border investments

Court dismissal of Xayaburi dam lawsuit highlights the need to strengthen accountability of cross-border investments

By Phairin Sohsai and Gary Lee On 17 August, the Thai Supreme Administrative Court ruled to dismiss a lawsuit, filed by 37 Thai villagers against five Thai state agencies for their role in approving the Xayaburi hydropower dam’s Power Purchase Agreement (PPA). Filed 10 years ago, the Xayaburi lawsuit was the first community-filed lawsuit related…

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Mekong environmental leader Niwat Roykaew wins prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize

Mekong environmental leader Niwat Roykaew wins prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize

By Pai Deetes, Regional Campaigns and Communications Director, Southeast Asia Program Today, Niwat Roykaew of Chiang Khong Conservation Group is a recipient of the Goldman Environmental Prize, for a momentous win for the Mekong River where the Thai Cabinet formally called for the cancellation of the Lancang-Mekong Navigation Channel Improvement Project, known as the Mekong…

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International Hydropower Association’s Greenwashing of Nam Theun 2 Dam’s Impacts on Indigenous Peoples

International Hydropower Association’s Greenwashing of Nam Theun 2 Dam’s Impacts on Indigenous Peoples

by Bruce Shoemaker and Ian G. Baird A newly released article by the International Hydropower Association (IHA), titled “Laos: Hydropower built in consultation with Indigenous communities” by Eduard Wojczynski, holds up the Nam Theun 2 (NT2) hydropower project as a positive example of benefit-sharing for Indigenous communities. The article is presented as a case study…

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Our World Heritage is deeply tied to rivers and they need protection from dams

Our World Heritage is deeply tied to rivers and they need protection from dams

by Gary Lee, Southeast Asia Program Director for International Rivers, Sarinee Achavanuntakul, Head of Research for  Fair Finance Thailand, and  Eugene Simonov, Co-founder, Coordinator and Conservation Science Expert for Rivers without Boundaries. This article originally appeared in Mongabay This month’s World Heritage meeting represents a critical opportunity for the UNESCO World Heritage Committee (WHC) to protect…

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STATEMENT | The Mekong needs just energy transitions, not more destructive dams

STATEMENT | The Mekong needs just energy transitions, not more destructive dams

By: Save the Mekong Coalition On 11 May, the Mekong River Commission (MRC) announced that the proposed Sanakham hydropower project in Laos will undergo the MRC’s Prior Consultation process.[1] Sanakham is the sixth mainstream dam to be submitted for Prior Consultation. Opposing the Sanakham Dam The proposed Sanakham dam is expensive, unnecessary and risky – and…

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Covid-19 Impacts in the Mekong Region: Crisis to Opportunities Series

Covid-19 Impacts in the Mekong Region: Crisis to Opportunities Series

By: Pai Deetes, Thailand & Myanmar Campaigns Director The global Covid-19 crisis has shed a light on the deep-seated inequities in the way our rivers and the people who depend on them are treated. With the exposure created by this crisis comes an opportunity. As International Rivers adapts to current circumstances, we are strengthening our…

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PRESS RELEASE | Thai Mekong communities submit evidence of impacts in Xayaburi lawsuit

PRESS RELEASE | Thai Mekong communities submit evidence of impacts in Xayaburi lawsuit

By: Pai Deetes, Thailand & Myanmar Campaigns Director FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Today, the Network of Thai People in Eight Mekong Provinces submits additional evidence to the Thai Supreme Administrative Court in the ongoing lawsuit regarding the Xayaburi dam on the Mekong River in Laos. The lawsuit targets five Thai state agencies and challenges the legitimacy…

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Victory on the Upper Mekong: Thai Cabinet Terminates Rapids Blasting Project

Victory on the Upper Mekong: Thai Cabinet Terminates Rapids Blasting Project

By: Pai Deetes, Thailand and Myanmar Campaigns Director In a momentous win for the Mekong River, this week the Thai Cabinet formally called for cancellation of the Lancang-Mekong Navigation Channel Improvement Project, popularly known as the Mekong “rapids-blasting” project. The cabinet decision is the culmination of decades of campaigning by Thai Mekong communities and civil…

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Women’s rights and river protection

Women’s rights and river protection

By: Maureen Harris, Programs Director This article was originally featured on Asia Times Usually at this time of year during the dry season in northern Thailand, the Mekong River recedes, and sand and pebble beaches appear. Covering the pebbles, through the clear and shallow water, one can see the pale green kai, a river weed of…

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