Mekong River Faces Development Challenges

Vietnamese fishermen collect catches from the Mekong river near Arey Ksat village on the outskirts of Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Feb. 6, 2014.

08 April 2014
Vietnam calls on Laos to consult with other river countries before completing construction of two dams on lower Mekong. More

ADB Predicts Slower Growth for 2014

In its annual “Asian Development Outlook,” the bank said it expects to see a drop in the rate from about 7.2 percent last year to 7 percent this year.

Environment Groups Plan to Oppose Laos Mega Dams

Ahead of this week’s meeting of the Mekong River Commission, 39 international environmental groups called on the government to halt construction on the Xayaburi dam before February 2015.

Video Cambodia's Floating Villages Face Uncertain Future

Cambodia's Floating Villages Face Uncertain Future

Video Naga Biofuels Turning Used Cooking Oil Into Biodiesel​

Petroleum diesel is widely used in Cambodia, particularly in heavy trucks and vans, but also in many older cars.

Government Calls for Laos To Reexamine Mekong Dam

Environmental groups worry that the Don Sahong dam could devastate fisheries that provide a major source of food for Cambodians living along the Mekong and Tonle Sap rivers.

Tribes Hold Ceremony To Protect Trees in Remote Northern Province

The forest of Preah Rorka sits at the confluence of three districts, covering 90,000 hectares, and tribes in the area rely on the forest for their livelihoods.

Lower Mekong Countries Urge Halt to Lao Dam Project

Lao officials say they are conducting the project transparently and with the proper safeguards.

Wildlife Group Rebuts Environmental Assessment for Mekong Dam Project

World Wide Fund for Nature calls proposed Don Sahong dam a 'recipe for disaster'.

Ratanakkiri Complainants Want Forest Lands Returned

Representatives of 17 different groups say the Hoang Anh Gia Lai company, which received funding from the bank’s International Finance Corporation, devastated forest lands affecting up to 2,000 families.

Complaints Against Rubber Company To Be Assessed, World Bank Office Says

Seventeen different groups joined in the complaint, claiming the Hoang Anh Gia Lai rubber company had destroyed forestry lands affecting as many as 2,000 families.

New TV Campaign Aims to Save Vietnam's Wild Tigers

Public service announcement discourages purchase of tiger bone paste, used to treat joint problems and believed to improve sexual performance.

Mekong Villagers Want Laos Dam Postponed

The proposed dam project is planned for later this year, despite challenges from environmentalists and Cambodian and Vietnamese governments.

World Bank To Review Environmental Complaints Against Company

Supporters of the 17 hill tribe groups from northeastern Cambodia say they believe the complaint will meet World Bank standards for review.

Authorities Burn Down Cottages in Protected Forest Areas

Security forces razed some 300 cottages of villagers in two provinces Thursday, lighting them on fire and kicking out their occupants in reserved forest areas.

Indigenous Groups File Complaint to World Bank Over Forest Destruction

The IFC has invested in the company, Hoang Anh Gia Lai, which the groups say is responsible for damaging their culture, livelihoods, lands, forests and other natural resources.

Kuoy Tribe Says 7,000 Hectares Overrun by Chinese Companies

Members of the Kuoy hill tribe say they want the companies, Rui Feng and Lan Feng, to relinquish some 7,000 hectares of land that where granted by the government as part of 18,000 hectares in concessions.

Huge Drop in Optimism Over Country’s Direction, Survey Finds

The figure was a 24 percent drop from the same survey a year ago—prior to July’s marred elections and the political impasse and violent protests that followed.

Video Gibbons Conservation Attracts Tourists to Rattanakiri Province

Opportunities to see gibbons in the wild are extremely rare but now an eco-tourism initiative in Cambodia is offering tourists a chance to see them up close.

Carbon Credits Ready for Sale in Oddar Meanchey Forest

The Oddary Meanchey project was the first to be implemented, and seeks to safeguard 13 different communities across 64,000 hectares of forest.

Expert Touts Rise of Citizen Journalists

Ngeth Moses, ICT coordinator for the Community Legal Education Center, told “Hello VOA” Monday that new tools are making it easier for so-called citizen journalists to emerge.

Video Bosnian Nature Reserve Threatened by Hydroelectric Project

Bosnian Nature Reserve Threatened by Hydroelectric Project

Local Groups Say They Must Protect Forest, as Government Fails

Local watchdog groups say they have been forced to take forest protection into their hands, due to a failure of government to do so.

Businessman Sues Villagers Over Deforestation Allegations

The Kandal provincial court has summoned the two villagers, Sen San and Ouk Sambo, to testify on Friday.

Video Alumni Groups Raises Funds To Aid Flood Victims

Heavy rainfall and flooding along the Mekong River killed 168 people this year and damaged hundreds of thousands of hectares of rice and other crops across the country.

Video Student Group Raises Funds To Aid Flood Victims

Heavy rainfall and flooding along the Mekong River killed 168 people this year and damaged hundreds of thousands of hectares of rice and other crops across the country.

New Report Shows Cambodian Forests in Jeopardy

The rights group Adhoc says it is monitoring “at least 100” individuals who are complicit in forestry crimes across the country.

Lumber Tycoon Denies Allegations of Illegal Deforestation

The Cambodian Human Rights Task Force said in its report that some 1,400 families had been pushed from their land by the company of Try Pheap.

Report Blames Tycoon For Major Forest Destruction

The new report underscores the ongoing problem linking corruption, powerful business and the destruction of the country’s national resources.

Video Wildlife Protector Takes Pride in His Work

Wildlife protector says illegal poaching and trafficking are decreasing due to strict law enforcement, education, and providing alternative livelihood to local people. Thousands of animals, including the endangered ones, have been rescued and released back into their natural sanctuary.

Video Environmentalist Needs Government Political Will to Protect Wildlife

A leading environmentalist hopes that one day when there is a political will from Cambodian leaders their goal to sustainably protect wildlife in the southern cardamom mountain will be achieved. The area is abundant with different species of wildlife and it will not last forever if it is leased out to private companies for development. Suwanna Gauntlett, CEO and founder of Wildlife Alliance, talked to Men Kimseng of VOA Khmer when she was here in Washington DC.

Video On Tonle Sap, Collusion, Corruption Mean Illegal Fishing

Members of a fishing community in Battambang province say overfishing has increased in recent years, fueled in part by collusion between criminals and the authorities responsible for protecting them.

Video On Tonle Sap, Collusion, Corruption Mean Overfishing

Cambodia is facing a growing crisis from overfishing, as major fish stocks in the Tonle Sap lake are being depleted, diminishing a major source of protein for millions of people.

Video Wildlife Alliance Reduces Illegal Trade in Cambodia

Cambodia has long been a hub of wildlife trafficking. Nick Marx, Wildlife Programs Director of the Wildlife Alliance, says his efforts at combating the illegal wildlife trade in Southeast Asia has saved more than 56,000 animals from certain destruction.

Inmates Evacuated as Floodwater Fills Banteay Meanchey Prison

More than 800 inmates were evacuated from a Banthey Meanchey prison Thursday morning.

Video Cambodia Flood Killed At Least Thirty

Floodwaters in Cambodia continues to rise on Tuesday in the provinces along the Mekong river and in Phnom Penh, killing at least 30 people. Meteorology officials have voiced concerns that floods in some parts of the country could reach the levels of the ones in 1996, which claimed almost 170 lives and affected more than a million Cambodians nationwide. (Reuters)

Severe Flooding Inundates Families Across Three Provinces

Seven people have been killed and thousands more affected by flooding in Banteay Meanchey, Preah Vihear and Kampong Thom provinces.

Some Return After Eviction From Coastal Resort Development

About 1,100 other families, were forced to relocate to new villages in the mountain to make way for the massive development, undertaken by the Chinese Union Development Group.

Video On Coast, Chinese Development Pushes Thousands From Land

Thousands of families in the remote coastal province of Koh Kong have been evicted or are facing eviction in the face of a Chinese resort development project. Some families have moved unwillingly to relocation sites. Some are refusing to leave, setting the stage for another land dispute. The families are facing eviction from a 36,000-hectare resort development by the Chinese Union Development Group, which holds a 99-year lease on the land. Chinese hydrodam developments have already damaged major parts of Koh Kong, home to the Cardamom Mountains, Cambodia’s richest source of biodiversity. The resort adds to the difficulties facing residents of the province, which has also seen major evictions and disputes rising from the growth of a massive sugar plantation. Part one of a two-part series. (Say Mony, Koh Kong)

On Coast, Chinese Development Pushes Thousands From Land

More than 1,100 families in 13 villages across Kirisakor and Botumsakor districts are facing displacement from the $3.8-billion development project, according to rights organizations.

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Ancient Sculptures From Myanmar on Display in New Yorki
10 April 2014
For the first time ever, ancient sculptures from Myanmar are on diplay outside of the once-repressed country. The art is part of an exhibition called "Lost Kingdoms" at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. (Reuters)