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Southeast Asia is betting on hydropower, but there are risks of economic damage

2018-08-10 10:13:43       source:CNBC

August 10, 2018

Across the world, countries are building dams to create electricity and boost their economies, but the risks could outweigh the benefits.

Dams often inflicts environmental damage to aquatic eco-systems that creates socio-economic risks to communities dependent on rivers and lakes for their livelihoods. The problem is especially urgent in Southeast Asia, where dams are constructed in the Mekong River for hydropower.

Flowing through LaosCambodiaThailandMyanmarVietnam and China, the Mekong is the world's 10th-largest river and the world's largest inland fishery. It is home to biodiversity that's second only to the Amazon River and boasts immense economic value. It accounts for 25 percent of the global freshwater catch and some 60 million people make an income off the fish as well as crops grown along the river banks.

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