Subscribe Search

Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Groups discuss impact of upcoming Laos dam

Groups discuss impact of upcoming Laos dam

NGO Forum Director Tek Vannara speaks to the press about Laos’s Pak Beng dam yesterday in Phnom Penh.
NGO Forum Director Tek Vannara speaks to the press about Laos’s Pak Beng dam yesterday in Phnom Penh. Heng Chivoan

Groups discuss impact of upcoming Laos dam

A coalition of youth and community groups yesterday held a meeting in Phnom Penh to discuss the controversial Pak Beng dam in Laos, issuing a request for its construction to be halted until after an impact assessment expected from the Mekong River Committee (MRC) is released.

Tek Vannara, director of NGO Forum, which represents 52 local and international groups, said the request to halt construction had been submitted to the MRC and the Lao government.

“The development of the Pak Beng dam is a project that will affect the fishing industry and livelihood of the people who are living at the lower and upper parts of Mekong River,” said Im Sophat, a representative of Cambodian Volunteers for Society, after the NGO Forum meeting.

The study is due to be released at the end of this year and is meant to be a basin-wide assessment of all hydropower dams, irrigation and even climate change. Past impact assessments issued by the MRC have been criticised for not addressing the cumulative effects of building multiple dams.

The committee this month held its final stakeholder meeting on the Pak Beng dam, and is set to meet again next week to conclude the consultation process and allow construction to begin.

The MRC, which itself has no power to halt dam construction, could not be reached.


  • Australians protest Asean summit visit by PM Hun Sen

    Hundreds of protesters gathered in Sydney’s Hyde Park on Friday to protest against Cambodian strongman Hun Sen, who claimed to have been gifted millions of dollars by the Australian government ahead of a special Asean summit this weekend. An estimated 300 protesters, the majority of

  • American ‘fugitive’ arrested in Cambodia outside of US Embassy

    An American citizen was arrested on request by the US Embassy in Phnom Penh on Tuesday, according to Cambodian police. Major General Uk Hei Sela, chief of investigations at the Department of Immigration, identified the man as American Jan Sterling Hagen, and said he was

  • One Australian, one Cambodian killed in explosion at military base

    Updated: 5:20pm, Friday 16 March 2018 An Australian tourist and a Cambodian soldier were killed in an explosion on Thursday afternoon at an army base in Cambodia’s Kampong Speu province. The Australian, whom the government initially identified as a technical demining expert in his 40s, and

  • Peeling back layers of prehistory in Battambang

    When the man passed away, he had not yet reached 50. He belonged to a tribe that had settled near the Sangker River in Battambang province, likely cultivating the fields and raising animals. On the side, they hunted for boars, and even turtles, one of which