An uncertain future: Working towards a thriving Tonle Sap

2nd Mekong Virtual Symposium

The US Department of State Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs, Bureau of Global Public Affairs, Embassy Phnom Penh, Embassy Bangkok, and the Sustainable Infrastructure Partnership are pleased to announce the second Mekong Virtual Symposium. This program will engage key stakeholders on the range of issues facing the Tonle Sap Lake in Cambodia: fishing and fish migration, plastics, floods and droughts, sediment, and dam impacts.  

Kompong Phluk, Tonle Sap, Cambodia

The Mekong River  is home to one of the most biodiverse river ecosystems in the world with over 1,100 species of fish.  The Tonle Sap Lake – the world’s most productive inland fishery – is a unique and critical part of this complex system. During the annual monsoon season, the lake swells in size and experiences a flow reversal, where instead of water flowing from the lake to the Mekong, water goes from the Mekong into the lake. This phenomenon is fundamental to maintaining fish passage and sediment flows, and ultimately, the thriving ecosystems and livelihoods reliant on the Tonle Sap.  As the Mekong’s flow reversal happens later and later each year, the Tonle Sap now faces an uncertain future. 

Join us before the program for a networking virtual happy hour; immediately following the program, participants will have the opportunity to join expert-led discussion breakout groups on specific topics and regions of interest. 

Please RSVP.

Note: This event takes place on 19 November, 9-10.20 am Indochina time (ICT). For people joining us from the eastern US, it will be 18 November, 9-10.30 pm EST.

Mekong Virtual Symposiums

This event is part of a series of Mekong Virtual Symposiums (MVS) that are bringing together governments and stakeholders from the Mekong region and beyond to discuss the most pressing issues of resource use, infrastructure, and environmental care. The 1st MVS took place on July 15, 2020, and focused on drought and salinity management in the Mekong Delta, Viet Nam.

Highlights of the 1st Mekong Virtual Symposium

  • More than 200 participants from different parts of the world took part.
  • Presenters discussed the impacts of the Delta's unusually long and severe drought.
  • Participants called for research on the topic: “How have water-use intensity and mismanagement of infrastructure cumulatively impacted the Mekong Delta?”
  • Participants introduced their projects and research findings, showing that local communities, responsible agencies, and universities are already working together towards adaptation to cope with a greater degree of salinity intrusion and water shortages. 

To see presentations and other information from the 1st MVS that took place on July 15, 2020, click here.


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