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Fish Migration, Dams, and Loss of Ecosystem Services in the Mekong Basin

The past decade has seen increased international recognition of the importance of the services provided by natural ecosystems. It is unclear however whether such international awareness will lead to improved environmental management in many regions. We explore this issue by examining the specific case of fish migration and dams on the Mekong river. We determine that dams on the Mekong mainstem and major tributaries will have a major impact on the basin’s fisheries and the people who depend upon them for food and income. We find no evidence that current moves towards dam construction will stop, and consider two scenarios for the future of the fisheries and other ecosystems of the basin. We conclude that major investment is required in innovative technology to reduce the loss of ecosystem services, and alternative livelihood strategies to cope with the losses that do occur.

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Additional Info

Field Value
Document type Reports, journal articles, and research papers (including theses and dissertations)
Language of document
  • English
  • Ecosystems
  • Hydropower dams
  • SDG14 Life Below Water
  • SDG15 Life on Land
Geographic area (spatial range)
  • Cambodia
  • Lao People's Democratic Republic
  • Myanmar
  • Thailand
  • Viet Nam
Copyright Yes
Access and use constraints

Open Access provided by The National Center for Biotechnology Information advances science and health by providing access to biomedical and genomic information. Article supplied by Springer full citation should be used when referencing this article.

Version / Edition 1
License unspecified
Co-author (individual) Patrick J. Dugan,corresponding Chris Barlow, Angelo A. Agostinho, Eric Baran, Glenn F. Cada, Daqing Chen, Ian G. Cowx, John W. Ferguson, Tuantong Jutagate, Martin Mallen-Cooper, Gerd Marmulla, John Nestler, Miguel Petrere, Robin L. Welcomme, and Kirk O. Winemiller
Publisher Ambio
Publication date 2010
General note

Ambio. 2010 Jun; 39(4): 344–348. Published online 2010 Jun 3. doi: 10.1007/s13280-010-0036-1

Keywords Mekong Basin
Date uploaded February 12, 2018, 03:47 (UTC)
Date modified February 12, 2018, 03:48 (UTC)