Kud Ting wetland, Thailand

Sharing benefits across borders: Messages from Mekong2Rio

Innovative collaborative actions that foster positive results are instrumental in encouraging further cooperation between sovereign countries, was the message from IUCN to the participants of Mekong2Rio, an international conference organized by the Mekong River Commission in Phuket, Thailand on 1-3 May 2012.

> Read full story

Mark Smith addressing the audience at Mekong2Rio Conference, Phuket, 1 May 2012

Water means wealth – ‘smart’ water management in Asia and the Pacific

Marseille, France, 16 March 2012 - Availability of fresh water is essential to social and economic growth. Investing in sustainable water management should be a priority for all decision makers, according to a recent publication by IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) and ADB (Asian Development Bank).

> Read full story


Water Lily Survey

Celebrating wetlands in Vietnam

The 4th Forum on “Nature and culture conservation for the sustainable development of the Mekong Delta” was held on 21 July 2012 in the city of Cao Lanh, Dong Thap province, Vietnam. On the following day, a ceremony was organised to celebrate the Listing of Tram Chim National Park as the country’s 4th Ramsar Site and the number 2,000 site worldwide.

 > Read full story

Opening ceremony for the forum on the Mekong River Delta

A dialogue on integrated water and wetlands management among six local authorities in Kang La Wa wetland, Khon Kaen province

Sixty participants representing six tambon administrative organisations (TAOs) around Kang La Wa wetland gathered on 21–22 May 2012 to develop a collaborative plan for integrated water and wetland management to support various user groups and local livelihoods. The dialogue was supported by MWD Thailand.

> Read full story

Six local authorities around the Kang La Wa wetland participated in the dialogue

Improving wetland functioning and services by developing a communal kaem ling (“monkey cheek”) water retention system

On 7–8 May 2012, MWD Thailand, together with the villagers of Ban Bha Sak Luang, a village bordering Wieng Nong Lom wetland, and the Thailand Research Fund (TRF), joined hands to build a clay dyke strengthened with local materials such as bamboo and giant mimosa poles. The communal dyke will serve to create a small reservoir – known in Thai as a kaem ling or “monkey cheek” after the animal’s practice of filling its cheeks with food – to retain water from the rainy season and maintain water levels during the dry season.

> Read full story

Building a clay dyke strengthened with local materials such as bamboo and giant mimosa poles.

Studying local laws in a wetland: How traditional knowledge and beliefs can help to protect nature

Local communities and ethnic groups in Lao PDR are strongly attached to local beliefs, taboos and spirit related traditions. In many ways, these beliefs are highly associated with respect of nature and worshiping land and its resources.

> Read full story

Raphaël Glémet, IUCN Lao PDR

Supporting civil society to influence the development of Vietnam’s Water Law

In 2011, Mekong Water Dialogue (MWD) funded Vietnam River Network (VRN) to do a detailed review of draft versions of the new Water Law. VRN and the Vietnam Union of Science and Technology Associations (VUSTA) organized a series of consultation meetings to gather feedback from local NGOs, academia, and the general public.

> Read full story

Participants attend a consultation workshop organized by VRN

Canceling Fishing Lots in the Tonle Sap: Benefits and Risks

On February 28, 2012, speaking to students at the Institute of Technology of Cambodia (ITC) in Phnom Penh, Prime Minister Hun Sen said “I need to send a message to all people in the whole Tonle Sap that there are no longer any fishing lots”.

> Read full story

The local fishermen fishing in Beoung Chhmar, Tonle Sap

Travels along the Mekong Fish Market Chain

An early morning in late March, my IUCN colleague ,Vilavong, and I were in Naksang, Lao PDR (in the 4,000 islands) looking for transport to Pakse when a song teow (small truck converted into passenger vehicle) packed full of buckets of pa dek (fermented fish sauce, a staple of Lao cuisine) picked us up.

> Read full story

Eliza Berry, IUCN, 2012.

No flood, no money. What a trade!

When asked about his future, Nguyen Van Nghe, a fisherman in Dong Thap Province answered: “No flood, no money. What a trade!” He was referring to the fact that over the last 10 years the construction of high dykes in Dong Thap and the Long Xuyen Quadrangle has blocked the annual replenishment of freshwater, nutrients, and sediment on which fish depend.

> Read full story

Fish collected by farmers

MWD considers local and international communities' concerns over Xayaburi dam

Today, nobody can deny the contribution of the Mekong River to the livelihoods of more than 60 million people and the abundance of natural resources of its basin.

> Read full article


U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at the Friends of the Lower Mekong Ministerial Meeting in Phnom Penh, 12 July 2012.

MWD welcomed Sorn Pheakdey to the team

In March, the MWD Team welcomed Sorn Pheakdey, new MWD Cambodia Field Coordinator.

> Read full story

Pheakdey Sorn, MWD Field Coordinator, Cambodia

MWD team exchanged experience with Myanmar counterpart

Although Myanmar is not part of MWD, the door to collaboration is open. By Inlay lake in June, MWD Team sat together with Myanmar environmental conservation organization and government agencies to learn more about natural resources management in Myanmar, as well as to share information and work experiences with Myanmar counterpart.

> Read full article

MWD Team meeting in Myanmar June 2012 - Inle Lake visit

MWD Thai National Working Group first met in Chiang Khan

On 25-26 June 2012, members of MWD Thai National Working Group (TNWG) gathered in Chiang Khan, Loei Province in northeastern Thailand. The meeting was co-hosted by Chiang Khan Municipality, local NGOs and researchers were invited to join the discussion and share information.

> Read full story

MWD Thailand Working Group Meeting in Chiang Khan, Loei, Thailand, June 2012

MWD team reviewed the work progress in 2012

In June, MWD Team got together in Inlay Lake, Myanmar, to review MWD project implementation during the first half of 2012 and agree on the plan of activities for the rest of the year. From January to June 2012, several MWD activities were undertaken in Thailand, Cambodia, Lao PDR and Viet Nam.
> Read full article

Maung Maung Pyone, Secretary of Biodiversity and Nature Conservation Association (BANCA) @ MWD Team Meeting in Inlay Lake, Myanmar, 18-22 June 2012

Mekong Water Dialogues Phase 2 (2010-2014) Annual Progress Report 2011 (Released January 2012)

 > Read full report

MWD Phase II (2010-2014) Annual Progress Report 2011

Siphandone: The Mekong Under Threat

The book was first published in English and Thai. This year, the Khmer and Lao editions are available. For free-of-charge copies, please contact: Kimleong Sar, Outreach Assistant, IUCN Cambodia, Tel: +855 (0) 12 855 737, Email:  kimleong.SAR@iucn.org ; and Raphaël Glement, Water and Wetlands Officer, IUCN Lao PDR, Tel: +85 6 21 216401, Email: raphael.GLEMENT@iucn.org


Siphandon Books

Xayaburi Hydro Power Project

Powering Progress is the website of the Department of Energy Promotion and Development (EPD), which is under the mantle of the Ministry of Energy and Mines, Lao PDR. It has been established to share information on the Lao Government’s hydropower development plan, which is an integral part of the country’s poverty reduction and development strategy. The site hosts information about hydro power projects in Laos including Xayaburi project.

> Visit website

poweringprogress.org homepage

IUCN Environmental Law Programme

This programme aims to advance sustainability through the development of legal and policy concepts and instruments, and through building the capacity of societies to develop and implement environmental law and policy, in furtherance of the IUCN Mission. The Programme activity is delivered through the collective efforts of the Commission on Environmental Law and Environmental Law Centre.

> Visit website

IUCN Environmental Law Programme
Upcoming Events

- Water Laws Workshop
  Date: 6 August, 2012
  Venue: Vientiane, Lao PDR

- Seminar on Thai National Water Management Policy
  Date: 30 August 2012
  Venue: Bangkok, Thailand

- IUCN World Conservation Congress
   Date: 6-15 September 2012
   Venue: Jeju, South Korea

- Seminar on Thai Water Laws
  Date: 29 September 2012
  Venue: Bangkok, Thailand

- Hydro-diplomacy Conference
  Date: 31 October 2012
  Venue: Thailand



The Mekong basin is one of the richest regions of biodiversity in the world
In the News

Biodiversity Could be Casualty of Burma’s Reform
The Irrawaddy Magazine, 8 May 2012
> Read full story

Climate change and its impact on the Lao and Cambodian people

Vientiane Times, 3 May 2012
> Read full story

As Vietnam develops, things only getting worse for Mother Nature
Vietweek, 23-29 March 2012
> Read full story



Logos of the Mekong Water Dialogues and Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland.

MWD is coordinated and facilitated by IUCN and supported by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland. It was initiated to work with countries of the Lower Mekong - Cambodia, Lao PDR, Thailand and Viet Nam - to improve water governance by facilitating transparent and inclusive decision-making for improved livelihood security, human and ecosystem health. To subscribe or unsubscribe from this mailing list – please contact: dararat.WEERAPONG@iucn.org.