Hydropower in Southeast Asia holds much promise. According to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), hydropower capacity in the region grew almost threefold from 16 GW to 44 GW between 2000 and 2016.
Cambodian premier Hun Sen on Monday opened the country's largest hydropower scheme, swatting aside dire warnings about the environmental impact of the US$780 million project and its effect on local communities.
Originating in the Tibetan highlands and running through China, Myanmar, Thailand, Lao PDR, Cambodia, and Vietnam, the Mekong and its tributaries provide water, food and income for 60 million people.
At the World Economic Forum on ASEAN in Hanoi last month, Thongloun Sisoulith, Prime Minister of Lao PDR acknowledged the recent devastation caused by a hydroelectric dam failure in his country and added that his government would proceed with caution wi
Hundreds still remain unaccounted for in the thick mud and flood waters of Attapeu and Champasak, two provinces in southern Lao PDR where the failure of an auxiliary dam sent a torrent of water gushing down on 13 villages downstream.
Mountainous and landlocked Lao PDR, known as the "Battery of Asia", is building dozens of dams at breakneck speed so it can sell energy to power-hungry neighbours as a fast track out of poverty.
Hundreds are missing and an unknown number feared dead after a partly built hydropower dam in southeast Lao PDR collapsed after heavy rain and sent a wall of water surging through six villages, state media and contractors said Tuesday.