Challenges Facing The Mekong River Environmental Sciences Essay

Life along the Mekong River is threatened by globalisation, new towns and metropoliss are acquiring built on the Bankss of the river doing pollution and the people are disforesting the forest which is destructing the ecosystem. The Mekong River is a river of life because it supports agribusiness, conveyance, cultural traditions for 1000000s of people populating on its Bankss. Seasonal tides of the Mekong River give the people populating on the Bankss different things. During low tides, people grow veggies near to its Bankss. When the tide is high between May and June, there are fish in the river and that clip the people do angling. Their figure beads during the low tides between November and April, yet angling is possible all twelvemonth about. The Mekong is a River of Life for the people and the people are killing it. There are many islets and rapids in the country along the Thai and Lao boundary lines. The islets are beginnings of nutrient and the rapids are engendering topographic points of fish, including the elephantine mudcat, which is the biggest fresh water fish in the universe. Plants that grow on the islets provide nutrient for the local people, and some of them are besides made into herbal medical specialties. The islets, rapids, drops and the Bankss along the river, supply beautiful sights, which creates touristry and tourer come to the river to see these sights making an economic system. Apart from feeding the local communities with workss and animate beings, the Mekong River is besides related to their beliefs, traditions, and civilizations. The Lai Rua Fai event, or the Floating of Illuminated, and the Boats Festival, takes topographic point in the river at the terminal of the three-month Buddhist Lent. The twenty-four hours falls on the full Moon of the 11th lunar month in October, and it is the clip when crowds of people gather along the river Bankss to witness the “ Naga bolides ” hiting up from the river. No 1 can explicate why balls of light rise from the river, sometimes every bit high as 200-300 metres up in the sky, on this day of the month every twelvemonth.


The two most of import current issues endangering the river are the edifice of dikes and blasting of rapids which means the river is acquiring leveled. Other environmental concerns arise because as the river is leveled there is an addition of H2O flow, implosion therapy, and dikes are created to halt implosion therapy and to make dikes the authoritiess are relocating the people. Cambodia is the most open, depending on a all right balance of H2O flow, fearing a mass dearth and lay waste toing inundations, the same one which destroyed the Angkor land 700 old ages ago. Laos ‘ biggest metropoliss need the Mekong as does the largest metropolis and fiscal hub of Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh City, which would be vulnerable largely to moo flow and pollution.

17 dikes late built on the Mekong River in Southeast Asia are endangering piscaries, destructing a huge ecosystem, and hungering 1000000s. And 11 more dikes are presently in the planning procedure. The dikes already in topographic point are barricading fish from going upstream to reproduce, and the new dams- many of which will sit nearer the river ‘s beginning and could endanger the full river ecosystem. 65 million people presently live and rely upon the Mekong for their support, and about 80 per centum of their protein intake comes from the river ‘s piscaries. Most of the new development is slated to go on within China ‘s boundary line, which will consequence the full river system downstream. That development is already undermining fish populations and doing eroding in Myanmar, northern Thailand and northern Laos. Of class, the part ‘s turning electricity demands are frequently cited for the necessity of constructing more dikes. It ‘s true that the dikes already in topographic point along the Mekong provide much needed renewable power to 1000000s. Though there is surely a point when adequate becomes plenty. Too many dikes end up harming far more people than they help, and in unmeasurable ways that are n’t sustainable. Aside from harming piscaries, the dikes are seting 1000000s out of work who make and sell merchandises from the river, including occupations like mending boats and doing fishing cogwheel. Furthermore, 1000s are set to be displaced. The controversial Nam Theun 2 Dam undertaking entirely will deluge more than 600 sq kilometer, and will displace at least 7,000 when completed. Today, the Mekong River, the Delta part, and all those shacking in the Mekong Basin are threatened by the foolhardy development and abuse of this great river. The new menace is far greater than any drouth or inundation. Water recreation and development undertakings along the Mekong River are presenting new menaces throughout the river ‘s basin, but most peculiarly in the Delta — threats non merely to the Delta dwellers ‘ manner of life and agricultural productiveness, but to the river and Delta ecosystems. Scientists and applied scientists in Vietnam and abroad are concerned by the environmental harm to the Delta being caused by the development undertakings far upriver from Vietnam. These undertakings include big scale hydro-power developments in China and in Laos, and the monolithic Mekong H2O recreation undertakings undertaken by Thailand. The economic costs and environmental effects of the undertakings, nevertheless, are being borne by people with no voice in these determinations, by people who reap no benefit from these undertakings, and borne most to a great extent by those life and farming far downstream in the Mekong Delta.

Alarm bells are now pealing in the Delta, the one-year inundation husbandmans ever need for their cropland and the control of dirt sourness did non get in 1998 and the H2O degree at Tan Chau monitoring station, at the terminal of the rainy season, has fallen to a 73-year record. Attach toing the drastic decrease in Mekong H2O degrees and H2O flow are similar decreases in fishing crops, and loss of the Mekong ‘s nutrient-rich river deposits indispensable for productive rice agriculture. The land H2O degree in the delta is now falling due to the deficit of river H2O needed for aquifer recharge. Saltwater has invaded up to 70 kilometers ( 32 stat mis ) into the Mekong delta, endangering to pollute bing land H2O supplies and to render 1000000s of hectare ‘s of farming area useless. The agricultural and environmental profusion of the Mekong River Delta must be protected. Not merely on behalf of Vietnam, but on behalf of all the people of Southeast Asia. The Mekong river – the universe ‘s last staying major river to still flux through mostly undeveloped and natural ecosystems – must be preserved and safeguarded.

Dams on the Mekong River

Gongguoqiao Dam 2008 completion day of the month

Xiaowan Dam 2013

Manwan Dam 1996

Dachaoshan Dam 2003

Nuozhadu Dam 2017

Jinghong Dam 2010

Ganlanba Dam n/a

Mengsong Dam n/a

Technology is a helpful promotion, but there are more negatives than positives, so there should be engineering on the Mekong River, but at a smaller graduated table.

“ Any determinations that will impact fishing, communities, resources, life styles, civilizations, and civilisations along the Mekong River must be made and approved by local people or those whose lives depend on the river. ” Kitikorn Wongpanich