Eight coastal provinces across Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam signed a declaration last week, announcing their intention to work more closely together to better adapt residents of the low-lying communities to the effects of climate change.
The declaration was signed last Friday in Sihanoukville as part of an EU-funded initiative.
Kimsreng Kong, senior program officer at the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, said the declaration was not meant to help stop climate change, but rather to provide a platform for communities in the rapidly developing provinces of Koh Kong and Kampot to raise concerns to policymakers.
Kong cited the digging of a 2-kilometre canal so a Koh Kong community could easily travel to schools and hospitals during high tide as one of the program’s benefits so far.
“We cannot stop development, but we are trying to guide development to reduce the impact to the community,” Kong said.