Don Sahong dam faces more problems

Discussion in 'Laos - General Discussion Forum' started by brian_bkk, Jun 27, 2014.

  1. The Nation June 27, 2014 1:00 am

    The Laotian government said yesterday that it would have the controversial Don Sahong dam undergo a formal process of prior consultation - a decision that will probably delay the project further.

    "The government has already demonstrated that it is committed to developing the Don Sahong project in a responsible and sustainable manner," Deputy Minister of Energy and Mine told Mekong River Commission (MRC) meeting on Thursday.

    Laos plans to build the dam in the mainstream part of the Mekong River in the southern province of Champasak. It will be located in the Siphandone (Khone Falls) area, less than 2 kilometres upstream of the Laos-Cambodia border.

    However, the biggest concern of the other members of the MRC - namely Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam - is that the dam will block the migration of fish. Also, Vietnam and Cambodia, both of whom are downstream, would suffer from a drop in the flow of water, which would affect their fishery and agricultural sectors.

    As per the agreement, Laos is required to notify all MRC members of its plan to build the 260MW capacity hydropower dam. The members have said they want the project to go through a prior consultation process, which would allow them to voice their concerns and provide more input in the study.

    The prior consultation process requires a more comprehensive study of the project's environment and the social impact it might have. The process would take at least six months to complete.
  2. Update 27 January 2016

    Sad to say work is going full speed ahead on the new dam

    There's a bridge onto Don Sadam island where the dam is to go in on the Sahong channel.

    DonSahong-GTR-IMG_6468. The Don Sadam bridge

    DonSahong-GTR-IMG_6469. Don Sadam bridge

    View down stream from the Don Sadam bridge


    Cross the bridge you're immediately into the construction zone.


    As the be expected it is big road works




    They don't like you taking photos




    The mouth of the Don Sahong channel



    upstream to where the dam should be somewhere



    One of the local ferry services is still operating in amongst the construction.



    My last snap


    before I was told to stop taking photos.

    So leave I did.

    If you're in the area go & take a look. Its easy to ride in & they only harass you if you are taking a lot of photos.

    Note too that I wouldn't want to be riding in there in the wet. I got caught behind the water truck on the way out & riding snot on the 650 Vstrom is not on my list of priorities.
  3. Sad indeed to see such a beautiful area being spoilt.  Not to mention to impact on the peoples lives to come.
  4. #5 DavidFL, Feb 1, 2016
    Last edited: May 17, 2016
  5. Absolutely tragic

    Lao hydropower project death sentence for Mekong fish

    The construction of the Don Sahong hydropower project in southern Laos’ Champasak Province has cut off a main fish migration channel in the Mekong River, compromising the livelihoods of millions of people along the river basin.

    Don Sahong is an island in the Siphandone area of Champasak.
    Once part of the Bolaven Plateau, Don Sahong, along with thousands of other islands in the area, was formed after the plateau was flooded with water from the Mekong River, leaving only elevated parts as islands.
    From here, the river is divided into countless tributaries, canyons, and falls before joining up once again to flow a few kilometers downstream into Cambodian territory.
    The naturally rugged terrain typical of this area would have been an impossible challenge for fish migrating upstream during breeding seasons, had it not been for a calm waterway that weaves its way between the islands of Don Sadam and Don Sahong, connecting the mainstreams of the Mekong River.
    The Hou Sahong channel, as locals call it, enables year-round fish migration through the Mekong River and provides food and livelihoods for millions of residents living along the river basin.
    But the channel is no more after work on the Don Sahong hydroelectricity dam began.
    Lao KPL News reported that the commencement ceremony of the construction of the Don Sahong hydropower plant took place on August 16, despite actual work on the project having started more than a year earlier.
    For months, constructions have been finished on two blockage dams on either side of the Hou Sahong channel to connect Don Sahong and Don Sadam Islands.
    As of September 2016, a vast area of the Hou Sahong channel and nearby forest has been cleared to make way for the dam, leaving nothing but the dry and lifeless river bottom.


    The 260MW hydropower plant, 32 meters in height, has been the subject of constant criticism from international experts, who denounced the project for blocking the migration passage of fish that swim upstream for breeding.
    The Don Sahong dam is situated on crucial wetland conserved under the 1971 Ramsar Convention with over 160 contracting parties along other areas such as Stung Treng in Cambodia and Tran Chim National Park in Vietnam.
    While Cambodia signed up to the Ramsar Convention for Stung Treng, the Siphandone area lacks any protection across the border inside Laos.
    The International Union for Conservation of Nature asked Laos to sign up but the country declined to sign the Ramsar Convention, as their priority was to build a dam and also a special economic zone.
    The Lao government ignored the Procedures for Notification, Prior Consultation and Agreement (PNPCA) with other countries in the Mekong River Commission (MRC), of which Laos is a member, saying that the dam’s location was not a part of the mainstream Mekong River.
    Laos is also accused of bypassing prerequisite environmental and transnational impact evaluation prior to commencing the hydropower plant’s construction.
    It does not take long for the negative environmental effects of the dam to take place, as locals in Champasak Province have already experienced a 90 percent loss in the amount of fish caught even in the height of the flood season.
    According to a 2010 strategic environmental assessment by the International Center for Environmental Management (ICEM) on hydropower on the Mekong mainstream, the Don Sahong project would have negative impacts on the fish resource along the Mekong River, most significantly in Cambodia and Vietnam.


    The developer backing the Don Sahong dam is Mega First Corporation Berhad, a Malaysian company which also owns the British Virgin Islands-incorporated Don Sahong Power Company, one of the contractors of the project.
    Building materials for the project are provided by Chinese contractors Power China and SinoHydro, which also take part in the construction.
    Don Sahong is Laos’ second hydroelectricity plant on the Mekong River under construction, after the Xayaburi plant in northern Vientiane, out of its planned 11 projects.


    Attached Files:

  6. These Scum have No thought for the Future, People or the Environment! Me Me Me! It is a Terrible Trait throughout Society! Money First and all Else follows whatever the Consequences!
  7. Some vdo of the dam site construction.

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