Connect with us

China

China Power Dams on The Mekong are setting off alarm bells

The Mekong, one of the world’s major rivers, starting in Tibet and flowing through south China, Burma, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam, provides sustenance through irrigation and fishing to those living in its basin. But it also provides hydroelectric power through dams, three of which were built in China and with more planned.

Boris Sullivan

Published

on

The Mekong, one of the world’s major rivers, starting in Tibet and flowing through south China, Burma, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam, provides sustenance through irrigation and fishing to those living in its basin. But it also provides hydroelectric power through dams, three of which were built in China and with more planned.

Loading...

And it is precisely these dams that are now threatening the water supply, the livelihood of those living downstream, and the relations between China and its southern neighbors, according to Michael Richardson, senior research fellow of the Institute of South East Asian Studies.

China dams on the Mekong River

The sheer scale of China’s engineering to harness the power of the Mekong and change its natural flow is setting off alarm bells

A fourth Chinese dam, Xiaowan, that should generate 4,200 megawatts of power, could affect the level of fish stocks in Cambodia and water supply for Vietnam’s rice fields. But China contends controlling the water flow will prevent the adverse effects of erosion caused by the Mekong’s flooding cycle and will supply renewable energy. Winning the debate or coming to a workable compromise is further complicated by China’s refusal to join the Mekong River Commission, an inter-government agency whose members include the four of the downstream countries.

And though the global financial crisis has put on hold other dams being planned by the downstream countries, China is moving ahead with its plans. For now, there is time to assess how China’s dams may affect the other regions. But as this story shows, exploiting the natural resources that cross borders on a fair and equitable basis requires not only inter-government coordination, but also a knack for expecting the unexpected. – YaleGlobal

The sheer scale of China’s engineering to harness the power of the Mekong and change its natural flow is setting off alarm bells, especially in Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand and Laos, the four countries of the lower Mekong basin where more than 60 million people depend on the river for food, water and transportation.

A report in May by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) warned that China’s plan for a cascade of eight dams on the Mekong, which it calls the Lancang Jiang, might pose “a considerable threat” to the river and its natural riches. In June, Thailand’s prime minister was handed a petition calling for a halt to dam building. It was signed by over 11,000 people, many of them subsistence farmers and fishermen who live along the river’s mainstream and its many tributaries.

via Dams In China Turn The Mekong Into A River Of Discord.

China

Clear skies over Asia’s new foreign investment landscape?

East Asia Forum

Published

on

Compounding the fallout of the US–China trade war, the global pandemic and recession have caused considerable speculation on the future of foreign investment and global value chains (GVCs). But though there is likely to be some permanent change, it will probably not be as great as politicians expect.

Loading...
(more…)

Continue Reading

China

Will Myanmar’s coup help China influence ASEAN?

The Myanmar crisis is becoming increasingly tragic, with the military’s use of lethal force now killing over 60 protestors.

Avatar

Published

on

On 16 January 2021, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi concluded a visit to four ASEAN countries. One destination was Myanmar, the upcoming country coordinator of the ASEAN–China dialogue and now centre of international attention after the country’s military seized power.

Loading...
(more…)

Continue Reading

China

Rapid growth in China post-COVID makes it ripe for investment

Being “first in and first out” of COVID-19, China is the only country among the G20 that is thought by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) to have increased GDP in 2020.

Avatar

Published

on

China’s economy rebounded sharply.

In January 2020 as the world began to learn of COVID-19, many market observers predicted a challenging year for Asia. While there continue to be headwinds from the health and economic crisis, Asia, and China in particular, has demonstrated comparatively advantageous resilience.

Loading...
(more…)

Continue Reading

Most Viewed

Subscribe via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 14,079 other subscribers

Latest

Trending