00.20

KUTI ROYKAEW

teacher in a boat from Chiang Khong, on theThai side of Mekong River

When I go down to the Mekong river I saw many many people   who use

 Mekong river for life. It is a very bad situation in the Mekong now

 

00.41

 

Ms Souvanna Boutamong

Lao Ecologist on the Mekong River  near Vientiane in Laos 

 

People should pay more   attention  and concern about

 how to protect the Mekong river. The Mekong river is

 lower and lower.

 

01.20

Water sprouting from

Xiaowan Dam on the Chinese section of the Mekong 

In March 2010 the river reached its lowest level in 50 years .Could the major cause be found in man’s attempt to conquer nature,to tame the rapids and roar of  the Mekong with a cascade of dams ?

 

01.34

Titles

WHERE   HAVE ALL THE FISH  GONE?

 

 

 

 

 

 KILLING THE MEKONG DAM BY DAM

 

01.43

Views : The Mekong

mountains in Tibet to the delta in Vietnam

 

The Mekong. One of the great rivers of the

world. Coursing through  six countries, from

its source high in the Himalayas of Tibet,  4900

 kilometres long, Its journey ends in the

Mekong delta of Vietnam Rich in fisheries, wildlife,

dolphins and extraordinary biodiversity.

this is the  Amazon of  South East Asia.

 

02.08

 

KUTI  ROYKAEW

Interview

 

In Mekong River give everything food give culture for

life when you have no food,  you can get food from the

Mekong vegetables herbs, everythingand it is very

important that  Mekong river is mother. I think Mekong

 is the same as mother 

 

02.44

Boat in Kratie Cambodia

But dark clouds are gathering. A storm of controversy

hangs over the future of this great river.

Black clouds beckon. The Mekong is moving towards a

 huge dam building programme. Will the river become

 devastated by dams?  

 

3.03

Huaneng office of  Xiaowan dam company in Kunming

CHINA

 

A cascade of dams and reservoirs are being planned in

the boardrooms of Chinese hydro-power  corporations,

Thai companies, and other developers which could

change the Mekong for ever..

 

 

Chinese office of dam company Sinohydro  Karnchang MegaFirst –Thai /Malaysian dam developers and  development banks 

To Chinese Thai and Malaysian

companies, development banks

technocrats and  business lobbies:  the

Mekong is the dream of hydropower

potential for an energy-hungry region.

 

3.27

 

 

 

Thai fisherman on the Mekong  near Chiang Saen

Thailand

 

 

Fishermen 

 

 

Crocodile forest  plants Biodiversity and the ecosystem

But to the fishermen, small farmers, millions

of villagers along the Mekong, this taming of

the raging torrents with a cascade of dams, is

not a dream.

This developer’s dream is a fisherman ’s

nightmare. 65 million people in this region  are

dependent for food and livelihood on a healthy Mekong

 that long sustained their ancestors. If  the fast  flowing

 currents are transformed into still  reservoirs,  the

Mekong will be transformed into a devastated ecosystem.

 

4.00

 

forest  plants nature

 

 

4.09

 

Ms Souvanna Bouttamong

Lao  environmental researcher

Because the  life depends on the Mekong River, and it

not only affects  Lao people. And not only  Vientiane in

 the centre of Laos but  up to north Laos, depends on

 fish from the Mekong . 

 

4.25

 KUTI ROYKAEW 

leader of  Chiang Khong Conservation group  

 

Kuti is a teacher and environmental activist in Chiang

Khong on the Thai side of the Mekong.He has he has educated

55 communities in a lively campaign to save the Mekong

 

4.40

KUIT  ROYKAEW

 

 upper Mekong have a  dam in China. Have problem

many problems

 

4.47

XIAOWAN  DAM

completed in September 2010.

The  gigantic Xiaowan dam at 292 metres high, is  the  world’s

  tallest high arch dam ,nearly as high as the  the top of the Eiffel

Tower  in Paris

 

 

Music  Xiaowan Dam

 

 

 

Narration

 

 

 

Its vast reservoir covers an area of 190 square

kilometres

 

 

5.30

YAO WEN

First secretary of  Chinese embassy Bangkok

 the question of  dams does not affect the water flow of the

 Lancing river, so it does not affect the water flow  of the

Mekong [ note: Lancang is the Chinese name for Mekong River ]

 

 

5.36

 

Narration

 

Australian Mekong specialist  Philip Hirsch

has a very different assessment of  this  dam

 

5.44

Dr Philip Hirsch

Director of the  Australian Mekong Research  Centre

University of Sydney 

[The Nuozhadu dam is under construction]

The Xiaowan and the Nuozhadu, are of a completely  different order. these dams are going to fundamentally  and permanently affect the  hydrological flow of the Mekong  all the way through  the system

 

6.02

KUTI   ROYKAEW

demonstration outside Chinese embassy in Bangkok speaking in Thai

Subtiles

Thai teacher Kuti points out that China has not changed its policy at all. sub-titles If China does not respond to our demands we promise we will be back in front of the embassy

 

6.18

Narration

China  still plans to build four more dams without any

consultation with the communities that live downstream   

 

6.25

MAP OF  DAMS     narration

The headlong rush of hydropower plans to build more dams continues. China plans to have 8 dams. On the lower Mekong 11 more dams are being promoted in Laos and Cambodia 

 

6.42

Dr JUHA SAARKULA 

FINNISH INSITUTUTE OF  THE

ENVIRONMENT

I would really proposed to slow down the pace and take a time-out to look at the feasibility of the whole process and consider alternative developments

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6.55

SIPHANDONE - LAOS

FOUR THOUSAND

 ISLANDS

 

narration

 

How is it possible that a company could even

consider erecting a dam, only a  few

kilometres away from the   rapturous beauty

of the Khone Waterfall in Laos . ?

 

Siphandon district of Laos is known as four thousand  islands. A pristine wonder of nature,it  is central to the development of Laos as a ecotourism leader in the region.

 

08.08

MEGAFIRST COMPANY

 SIGN MAP OF  MEKONG

 ISLANDS  AND THE HOU

SAHONG  CHANNEL

Malaysian company Megafirst plans to build a dam

right  here 

 

 

08.15

Ms SOUVANNA BOUTTAMONG

Lao Cambodia Vietnam and Thailand all

depend on Hou Sahong. The fish migrate from

upstream to downstream. and from   downstream to upstream.

If they block this channel, I am not sure we will get fish to eat anymore. The food security. The peoples’  lives and peoples’ future, all depend on Hou Sahong.

 

 

8.06

 

   the Lao government is not  conducting any studies

 on this project..So the Lao government  has to  rely purely  on the

information  provided by the company, which essentially means 

you have  the fox  guarding the hen-house 

 

 

8.11

MAP  OF DON SAHONG DAM SITE

ACROSS THE HOU  SAHONG

CHANNEL

 Narration

The Don Sahong dam project and two more dams in across the border in Cambodia - in Stung Treng and Sambor would be the final blow to the survival of Mekong’s dolphin population

 

8.40

 GORDON CONGDON 

 representativeWWF

(WorldWildlife Fund)

 Kratie

Cambodia

 

This is the last remaining habitat of the Irrawaddy dolphin in the Mekong..A dam anywhere on the Mekong would have a probably devastating effect.The Irrawaddy Dolphin has long been an almost  sacred animal, certainly a revered animal in Cambodia

 

8.40

Dr So Nam

Director  of Institute

of  Fisheries

Cambodia 

 

 

Cambodian people totally depend on fisheries in consumption  and

protein intake in their daily diet. It is worth $250 million dollars at the

 landing site and provides  30% of agricultural products.

  It accounts for 8-12% of Cambodia’s  GDP. It is very high

The  fisheries sector is  very  important  for nutrition,  economy,

employment, in terms of biodiversity and also tourism .

 

9.33

CAMBODIAN DATA FISHERIES

CONSUMPTION  graphic

 

 

9.40

GORDON CONGDON 

WWF KRATIE

CAMBODIA

The people in Cambodia and the agriculture are   adapted to a river that floods nearly every year . The floods bring the water necessary to irrigate the rice fields. The floods also bring sediment and nutrients essential to maintaining the fertility of the soil. If this  cycle of flooding is  somehow controlled or interrupted by even by a relatively small degree, it could potentially have  a enormous  impact on agriculture and   food security  in Cambodia .

 

10.16

IMAGE OF FISH

 

 

10.20

CONGDON  WWF  interview  continued

The fisheries of the Mekong . the most

productive and important in the world,  largely depends on that

flood-pulse that comes every year.

 

10.30

GORDON CONGDON WWF

 

MAP OF TONLE SAP

TONLE SAP LAKE

CAMBODIA

FLOATING FOREST SEQUENCE

 

 

as you know there is this remarkable  phenomenon where the

river  that connects with Tonle Sap the great Cambodian  lake

with the Mekong.  The  Tonle Sap river reverses its flow every

year  when the Mekong is high, and the water flows into the Tonle Sap  the water in the lake expands 4-5 times its normal size the fish go out into the

flooded forest and breed This lake then becomes an incredibly  productive

nursery for the fisheries   

 

11.11         

 GORDON CONGDON

WWF

 

 

 

 

 

 

  The fish then come back down the river back

into the Mekong, and migrate up the river as far

as Thailand  

 

11.17

NY SAN

Cambodian ngo consultant

 

According to that study there is a thousand fish species along

the  Mekong,  and the  majority of fish species need to migrate in order

to give birth to new fish .

 

11.33

GORDON  CONGDON

Any minor modification to the hydrology of the Mekong puts

this incredible system at risk.

 

11.38

TONLE SAP SEQUENCE  FISH AND  BOATS

And at  risk is the greatest  inland fisheries in the world,  which is catching

around  3.9million tons of fish a year, valued at nearly 3 billion dollars.

 

11.58

JEREMY  BIRD

 former CEO 

MEKONG RIVER COMISSION

 

This a  river basin that has the largest inland fisheries in the world , and second in biodiversity after the Amazon. The fisheries is the number one issue to be solved. And the onus for demonstrating that this can be solved rests with the promoters  of the project  

 

 

12.15

near the Xayaburi dam-site on the

 Mekong

 

narration

The Xayaboury dam in Laos is  slated  to be the

first mainstream dam on the Mekong outside of

China.This  dam could become a test case for the

future  dam development on the Mekong

 

12.19

DR PHILIP  HIRSCH   

 

image of the endangered species

the Giant Catfish unique to the Mekong.

 The Xayaburi Dam is highly significant as the first

dam -  if it goes ahead ---to be built on the mainstream of the Mekong outside of China...it is significant in its own right .  The World Wildlife fund recently issued a report that the Giant catfish -the iconic fish of the Mekong, will become extinct if the Xayaburi dam goes ahead, and 41 other species that are likely to go extinct.

 if  the Xayaburi goes ahead It  opens the flood -gates (excuse the  pun) for all

the other  dams to get approval –once they have got  Xayaburi , they have got

the lot !

 

 

 

KUTI  ROYKAEW

music

 

12.57

KUTI   ROYKAEW

Interview on the Mekong

Xayaburi dam is a dangerous building for the people on  the Mekong river. Everybody want to money from Mekong river. They want to  make dam for electric(hydropower) .Easy to make money. Easy!

 

13.19

Graphic dam  and the

4 Thai  banks

The Bangkok Bank 2)The Siam Commercial Bank 3)Kasikorn bank 4) Krung Thai bank 

CH. KARNCHANG LOGO

 

This 3.5 billion dollar project for the Xayaburi dam

is funded by 4 biggest  Thai banks .95% of the electricity

willl be sold to Thailand. The dam-builder Bangkok’s

CH.Karnchang corporation plans to make a handsome profit.

 

13.42

narration

Dam protest in Bangkok

 

The opposition is growing among the citizens of

the Mekong. They demand the  dam-builders

respect  the international nature of this river and

the rights of  the citizens of the Mekong shared by

six nations

 

13.53

Chhit Sam Ath

NGO forum

I think that development has different dimensions. If

you are talking about infrastructure development

you can be talking about a bridge or a dam .

also  many  development projects are about 

improving the livelihood of the poor and vulnerable

groups. You have to think about development for

whom?  It is important for the developer or the government

to  answer this question.

Who will benefit from th

16.05

DANG THUY TRANG  WWF

 World Wildlife Fund

   Mekong Coordinator

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I think Vietnam has a very very big stake. we

have to consider how important the Mekong delta is in terms of

the  economy of the whole country.. Also in biodiversity   we have

 the greatest number of fish species in the whole Mekong

river.

Biodiversity is important, fisheries is very important

agriculture is extremely important, especially in rice production. Vietnam is the second largest rice  exporter in the world ,so now if there is a dam put in  the river -it is  blocking sediment. And it is not just the quantity of the sediment.

 It  is also  the quality  of the sediment that is important. And

that may completely change the ecosystem of the Mekong.

 

 

16.56

NGUYEN  HONG  PHUONG  

member of the VNMC

The Vietnam National Mekong

Committee 

 

. The effect of  the cascade of dams can be  massive. A  disaster

 to the Mekong people. So the people in the Mekong delta share

that .It  could be a disaster for their lives

 

 

17.09

DANG THUY TRANG  WWF

 

 

Vietnam’s point of view seems to be very

clear. We think it is reasonable to call for this 

10 year delay  of  the Xayaburi dam

 

17.20

NATIONAL  PARLIAMENT VIETNAM

music

 

17.20

 DOCUMENT STRATEGIC

ENVIRONMENTAL REVIEW

commissioned by the MRC

Xiaowan Dam

 

 

Vietnam   fully endorsed the Strategic Environmental Review, a

special study on the impact of dams  on future of the Mekong .

The review recommended: No more dams should be built for at

least 10 years. 

 

17.34

 THANH NIEN   newspaper

Headline ‘Damn Those Dams

 

 

17.36

HUN SEN MEETS

 VIETNAMESE  PM

NGUYEN TAN DUNG

The two prime ministers from Cambodian and

Vietnam held a summit meeting in  April 2011

in Phnom Penh. They  called on the  Lao 

government to delay the Xayaburi Dam project

 

17.50

Dr HIRSCH

 

 They also said in their statement that dam projects on

the Mekong including  Xayaburi should be put on hold

for at least ten years. The Lao government committed

 to do a review of the process

 

18.10

Dr KRAISAK

  CHOONHAVAN 

 photo :Bhumiphol Dam   Thailand

there are too many dams already in Thailand so they can never

build a dam  in  Thailand anymore. So companies like 

Ch.Karnchang go to Laos  to build big dams

 

18.23

narration

 

 

 

Even while the decision on the  Xayaburi Dam

was supposed to be under review by the Lao

government, Ch  Karnchang wasted no time in

building a road to the dam-site. Their message was

clear. The international consultations and agreements

of  the Mekong   River Commission were irrelevant

 

 

18.40

Dr KRAISAK CHOONHAVAN  Choonhavan 

Karnchang building a road to dam-

site

 We have called them but they did not come to the parliament . Ch.Karchang  does not respect the law in Thailand, nor its obligations to the parliament.

 

18.54

Karnchang logo

Dr  Philip  Hirsch 

Mekong Research Centre

Australia 

Ch. Karnchang is a construction company. It is there to make a profit for its shareholders. As far as I am aware it has not signed up to any code of corporate social responsibility

 

19.04

Dr KRAISAK

 CHOONHAVAN

Ch Karnchang operates without environmental studies or when they do it ,

they do it very poorly. They don’t feel compelled to do a comprehensive one

 

19.17

Dr PHILIP HIRSCH

And therefore If they are told they can go ahead and build a dam, then they will go ahead and build dam.  .They take a narrow view that we are only responsible to our  shareholders, we are there to a profit, no matter what it may cost the river, no matter what is may cost other countries, whatever it may cost people who live along the river .Their own bottom-line is if they can get away with it ,they will .

 

 

 

 

POYRY  SEGMENT

 

 

19.45

Buddist monks and others arching against Xayaburi  dam

Mounting protests against the Xayaburi Dam prompted the Lao government to hire an international consultant  Poyry Energy based   in Zurich. Poyry, the Lao government and the Thai dam –builder Ch. Karnchang had been working together on the Nam Ngum2 dam in Laos.

The Poyry Report with the focus on whether the dam complied with the Mekong River Commission guidelines on dams, gave a green light to the dam-bulders. It provided a stamp of approval for the Lao government  to launch the Xayaburi dam

 

20.17

Dr Jian Hua   Meng

Hydropower 

advisor working for  WWF

German-trained civil engineer Dr Jian Hua Meng is the WWF advisor on hydropower

 

20.25

DR.JIAN-HUA MENG

 

 

The consultant this Finnish-Swiss company advised the developer to go ahead in spite of the concerns.The compliance report has no credibility with other MRC countries and development partners, because It was done unilaterally and commissioned to the Ministry of Industry and Energy in Laos. This was completely outside MRC process ,It was merely a  commercial consultant report by a company looking for contracts.”

 

21.08

 

The dam was launched. Poyry Energy found their contract. They were handsomely rewarded with an 8 year contract to  supervise the dam design and the engineering

 

21.20

PIANPORN DEETES

The  Thai villagers in 8 Mekong provinces in north and north-east  submitted  a letter to Thai environmental minister to urge him to take a position not to buy electricity from the Xayaburi dam and to halt the power purchase agreement between Thai utility  Egat and Ch Karnchang company .

 

21.45

 

narration

Thailand will buy 95% of the electricity from the dam. Mekong villagers and. Ngos have filed  a case in the Thai courts to stop the contract.

 

21.57

HELSINKI  FINLAND

Poyry, the parent company in Helsinki, is under investigation by a government-backed tribunal.

 

22.06

Luiisa Ummonen

Poyry  gave badly misleading advice  and helped the Lao government to push through its devastating plans to dam the Mekong at  Xayaburi against the 1995 Mekong Agreement.”

 

22.20

Dr Jian

This is not how corporate responisible industry players should perform

 

 

 

LOGO OF OECD

The government insists that companies should adhere to Europe‘s OECD  rules of corporate social responsibility, both at home and abroad.

 

22.38

Luiisa Ummonen

by placing the ambitions of Poyry above the spirit of cooperation in  the Mekong agreement,Poyry has chosen to also place the livelihoods of millions of people in danger. This is unacceptable.”

 

22.55

narration

Poyry has denied all these accusations

 

 

POYRY ENERGY

DENIAL

. “We would like to stress that Pöyry has no conflict of interest in the Xayaburi project. It was natural that we were willing to continue in the project, since this way we can best supervise our recommendations [as consultant ]that will be implemented.”

Petteri Härkki President of Pöyry Energy Asia in Bangkok

 

23.16

 

MRC experts found may flaws in the 2011  Poyry report

 

23.38 

Dr Jian-Hua Meng

.some of them are very very fundamental but then oddly enough the report recommends to go ahead and build the dam and fix problems on the  way. You don’t get on a plane while you are still are uncertain about how to design it or how to land it.

 

 

 

POYRY assured diplomats the latest technology  would provide Over  80% mitigation for the fish.But many scientists like Dr Meng, dismiss these claims

 

 

ZURICH

SWTIZERLAND

 image High rise buildings and

 Credit Suisse bank

In Switzerland fish ladders only deal with a small number of species, whereas the Mekong is teeming with hundreds of different fish.

 

23.59

DR  JIAN  HUA MENG

building a fish pass based  on experiences of  northern Europe Switzerland and transferring them to the Mekong to a large tropical river  is just not serious business. This dam which is so benign so they claim, that it is virtually not there.This is basically nonsense. It is plain ridiculous. This is a fairy-tale ,a sales trick set into  the eyes of inexperienced political decision-makers. It  is basically a honey –trail  for political decision-makers

 

 

 

THE DAM CONSTRUCTION HAS STARTED

 

24.50

THE  RISK OF EARTHQUAKES

 

 

24.53

image: earthquake 2011 in Tachilek  northern Burma  opposite  Mae Sai on Thai

 side of the border

 

 

In a world of  increasing natural  disasters ,

building dams on sites prone to earthquakes

 is a major concern The March 24th 2011 

earthquake in Myanmar also inflicted damage

on  northern Thailand and  Laos  as Dr Sampan a Thai expert on

earthquakes explains

 

25.13

 

 

 

 

DR SAMPAN

      SINGHARAJWARAPAN

Seismologist

Department of  Geography

Chiangmai University

 that earthquake was a quite a big one for

Thailand and people in that region. It recorded

6.8 on the Richter scale, which is pretty big.

 

 

 

25.27

 

 

earthquake footage

 

this terrible destruction occurred  only a few hundred kilometers from where the Thai company Ch.Karchchang is determined to build a dam

 

25.37

Dr Sampan Singharajwaranpan

Even In that area,the  Xayaburi area a lot of big earthquakes occurred already. Recently there was  6.3 on the Richter scale 4-5 a few years ago, so that indicates it is earthquake prone and so that is a bit of a worry

 

26.01

Dr Sampan Singharajwaranpan

 

TSUNAMI  2004 FOOTAGE

 

 

If the dam is going to  be hit by the earthquake bigger than what they had thought, then  if the dam collapses, there is going to be a kind of  inland Tsunami! The  floodwater  could rise to about  20 metres high

 

 

26.15

Narration

 

Karnchang road-building

 

Dams on the Mekong threaten a  mad-made disaster that could destroy the food security.  The earthquakes only add to the dangers and concerns about hydropower

 

26.28

Dr JIAN-HUA MENG

 

Now the developer wants all the stakeholders to follow him  blindly while taking a leap of faith into an uncertain future and watch them take a very risky game of roulette based on biased advice. Now the stakes for 60 million people are too high. This is just very very high risk to go ahead

 

27.02

Narration

 

If the Xayaburi Dam goes` ahead, the Giant catfish already endangered will soon pass into the realm of the extinct. .Many species of migratory fish will die out and a unique ecosystem is doomed.

 

 Can the world allow the gradual killing of the mighty Mekong , dam by dam?  

 

 

27.31

Dr Kraisak Choonhavan

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Mekong river should be a river without dams.

A river that  should give life and biodiversity from China, all the way down to the sea. There should be no dams no dams at all

 

 

27.50

Ms Souvanna Bouttamong

Lao ecologist

Fisherman say more dams less fish. Local people  say

dams bring  development project dam – brings 

brightness In the eyes, but darkness in their heart.

For People born on the Mekong, the river is  like  their

blood, the principle of life. If the Mekong is destroyed

or damaged, I will  be sad.

 

28.28

Narration

Will the children of the future be asking : Where have all the fish gone?

 

 

 

CREDITS  THE END

 

           

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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